I am currently accepting graduate students to work on plant-mycorrhizal ecology. For more information about my research interests and opportunities for graduate study, please visit my research page.


My research lab is equipped to conduct a variety of research projects dealing with plants, soils, and mycorrhizal fungi. The lab is equipped with microscopes, an incubator, a laminar flow hood, a fume hood, a drying oven, a pH/mV meter, etc.

Facilities to support molecular work on mycorrhizal communities are available through the Center for Interdisciplinary Molecular Biology: Education, Research and Advancement (CIMERA). The lab also has computers with internet access and a variety of statistical analysis and graphics software.



Makenzie PierceMakenzie Pierce
Makenzie joined the lab in Fall 2019.  She is conducting an independent research project to examine whether herbivore performance on undamaged plants is affected if they are connected to herbivore damaged plants through a common mycorrhizal network.

Kathryn MercierKathryn Mercier
Kathryn joined the lab in Spring 2020.  She is conducting an independent research project to examine whether fitness of undamaged plants is affected if they are connected to herbivore damaged plants by a common mycorrhizal network.




Dan Lenz – MS Degree: Fall 2020
Thesis: Propagation of anti-herbivore defense cues in a common mycorrhizal network

Ian Mounts – MS Degree: Spring 2019
Thesis: The role of common mycorrhizal networks in ameliorating drought stress in Pseudotsuga menziesii

Erika Teach – MS Degree: Fall 2014
Thesis: Effects of soil compaction on emergence and growth of Quercus douglasii: implications for seedling recruitment

Christian Commander – MS Degree: Fall 2013
Thesis: The influence of dams on the abundance of Arundo donax (giant reed) in riparian corridors

Carolina Fonseca – MS Degree: Spring 2013
Thesis: Patterns of population differentiation in early traits of development in Elymus glaucus.

Beth Lesar – MS Degree: Spring 2009
Thesis: Influence of historical fire frequency on forest cover and stand structure in northeastern California

Andrew Griffiths – MS Degree: Spring 2007
Thesis: Heavy metal accumulation in MacDonald’s rock cress (Arabis macdonaldiana) defends against herbivory: a field experiment

Pamela Conavay – MS Degree: Spring 2007
Thesis: Population age structure and recruitment of blue oak (Quercus douglasii) at Deer Creek Hills Preserve, Sacramento County, California.

Justin Cutler – MS Degree: Fall 2006
Thesis: Accuracy assessment of high resolution multispectral satellite imagery for remote sensing identification of wetlands and classification of vernal pools in eastern Sacramento County, California.

Chris Fernandez – Undergraduate
Chris is a former undergraduate honors student who investigated whether there is a community-level association between the shrub Toyon (Heteromeles arbutifolia) and several oak species near Sweetwater Creek, El Dorado County.

Eddy Morgan – Undergraduate
Eddy is a former undergraduate honors student who compared the effect of stormwater effluent on algal species abundance and richness in the American River, Sacramento County.


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