Our lab examines terrestrial plant dynamics from the individual plant to the community level through the lens of plant water relations. Plant function is fundamentally constrained by the availability of water, which varies in complex ways across space and time. Plants engage numerous, diverse strategies to optimize growth and reproduction when water is available, while limiting losses when it is not. How these adaptations to a variable and uncertain environment translate into patterns of productivity, population dynamics, community structure and vegetation response to climate change is the overarching question that motivates our research. Research methods span the gamut from field research, greenhouse experiments and mathematical modeling.
Beth Crouchet and Nathan Custer presented on their research at the 2015 International Research Conference for Graduate Students at Texas State University, November 17 - 18, 2015:
Site factors influencing tree mortality during drought in Texas. Beth Crouchet, Susan Schwinning, Jennifer Jensen, Benjamin Schwartz.
Determining seed transfer zones for Mojave Desert shrubs. Nathan A. Custer, Susan Schwinning, Lesley A. DeFalco, and Todd C. Esque.
Scott Havill's paper on "Fire effects on invasive and native warm-season grass species in a North American grassland at a time of extreme drought" was highlighted in the October 2015 issue of Applied Vegetation Science (link).
The following students received awards and recognitions in the academic year 2015/16:
Beth Crouchet and Nate Custer received the Biology Department's "Certificate of Excellence"
Beth Crouchet was inducted into the National Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi
Beth Crouchet received the the Graduate College Scholarship - Science & Engineering and the Lamar and Marilynn Johanson Graduate Endowment Award.
Wesley Collins received a Freeman Center Scholarship.
The lab was awarded two federal grants in 2015:
NSF proposal : DEB-1557176: "Collaborative Research: Hydrological tipping points and desertification of semi-arid woodlands".
The DOD Legacy Award HQ0034-16-2-0006: "Characterizing Mojave Desert shrub ecotypes to establish seed transfer zones for military range restoration".
In September 2013, Susan was interviewed by Alan Knapp on a paper published in Functional Ecology. Listen to the podcast here.
|601 University Drive|
|312 Supple Science Bldg|
|Texas State University|
|San Marcos, TX 78666, USA|
|Phone: (512) 245-3753|
|Fax: (512) 245-8713|
Comments on the contents of this site should be directed to Susan Schwinning