Specific questions being investigated in my lab:
Determining the impacts of introduced species in coastal plant communities in the Caribbean islands. Currently we are comparing the invasiveness of Scaevola taccada in the habitat of the native species Scaevola plumieri on the islands of Culenbra and Vieques, Puerto Rico. This work uses standard ecophysiological tools such gas exchange systems, meterological equipment, and general ecological applications to learn how plants optimize resources when competing in the same niche. This is part of a collaborative project with Professor Susan Witherup and faculty at the University of Puerto Rico and US Fish and Wildlife Refuge on the island of Vieques, PR.
Plant Adaptations to Freezing and Drought: This project is aimed at understanding freezing and drought tolerance of grasses in the Pooidae to learn these plants have evolved through the last ice age in response to changes in temperature and drought. This is a collaborative project with Assistant Professor Jill Preston at the University of Vermont.
Adaptations of Plants in Response to Drought Stress: My overarching questions are aimed at understanding basic physiological responses of plants when exposed to drought which will provide insight on how plants deal with water stress when the continuous water columns in the xylem of plants break and form air blockages (embolism); also determining when and how plants remove these embolisms.
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Information on the procedures to conduct research.
- Northeastern American Society of Plant Biology Section Officer: Executive Committee Member
- Ad hoc Grant Proposal Reviewer for the National Science Foundation (NSF) and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)
- Ad hoc reviewer for the following peer review scientific journals:
- Professional Society Memberships
- Botanical Society of America
- American Society of Plant Biology (Northeastern and Environmental and Ecological Plant Physiology sections)