Research

Urban and suburban landscapes are often characterized by altered microclimates, changes in water availability, altered vegetation complexity, and greater human inputs. These characteristics are predicted to affect the services provided by turfgrass, shrubs, and trees as well as the insects that live and feed on them. Our goal as a lab, is to determine how these habitat characteristics affect insect pests and use the discovered relationships to manage them more effectively.

My lab’s research interests include:

  • Testing and improving existing pest management tools
  • Investigating biotic and abiotic effects on insect pests of turfgrass and ornamental plants
    • Drought stress
    • Temperature
    • Biological control
  • The roles that habitat type and vegetation complexity play in regulating the abundance and distribution of insect pests of landscape plants
  • The role of plant diversity in insect pest management and arthropod biodiversity
  • The effect of future conditions (urban development, sea level rise, warming temperatures, higher population density, water use restrictions, etc.) on insect pests and their turf and ornamental host plants

We address these research interests in the lab, greenhouse,  research station, urban landscapes, nurseries, and golf courses.


In the news:

Southeast Climate Science Center – https://globalchange.ncsu.edu/gloomy-predictions-new-article-shows-heat-drought-combine-increase-pest-outbreaks/

Morning Ag Clips – Boosting pollinators on golf courses

UF/IFAS Blog story – UF/IFAS researcher hope to bolster pollinators, reduce water use, inputs on golf courses

ACTrees – study offers guidelines to help cities improve tree planting

Science Daily – https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/05/160526101159.htm

Growing Florida – http://growingfl.com/news/2016/05/ufifas-study-could-help-cities-improve-tree-planting/

Newsweek – Want to see the earth after global warming? Move to the city

NC State News – Urban heat boosts some pest populations 200-fold

CityLab – Urban heat islands are helping kill trees

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