Our research examines how soil organisms interact with their environment to regulate ecosystem processes such as nutrient cycling, organic matter turnover, trace gas emissions, and productivity. This research encompasses multiple spatial scales and lies at the interface of soil ecology, biogeochemistry, and ecosystem science. While we use a range of fundamental laboratory methods, which include molecular chemical and microbiological approaches, we always have an eye towards applying our results to improve ecosystem processes and management.
Much of our current work focuses in some capacity on the feedbacks between plants, organic matter dynamics, and soil biological communities. We are particularly interested in examining the main pathways in which decomposer communities influence soil organic matter formation. We also have several projects examining the drivers of N cycling and availability in agricultural soils, and are specifically interested in finding ways that we can improve the synchrony between soil N availability and crop N requirements. Our research spans sites in the Northeast, Midwest, and West and includes different agriculture, forest, and mountain ecosystems.
Ph.D., Ecology, Michigan State University
Ph.D., Soil Sciences Related, Michigan State University
M.S., University of Maine
B.S., The Evergreen State College
NR 561: Chemistry of the Environment
NR 761: Environmental Soil Chemistry
NR 903: Approach to Research
Kallenbach, C. M., Frey, S. D., & Grandy, A. S. (2016). Direct evidence for microbial-derived soil organic matter formation and its ecophysiological controls. Nature Communications, 7(1). doi:10.1038/ncomms13630
Hale, I., Wollheim, W., Smith, R., Asbjornsen, H., Brito, A., Broders, K., . . . Rowe, R. (n.d.). A Scale-Explicit Framework for Conceptualizing the Environmental Impacts of Agricultural Land Use Changes. Sustainability, 6(12), 8432-8451. doi:10.3390/su6128432