Research Interests

Current Projects

Restoration Success in the Southwest US (NAU/USGS)

I am engaged in a larger USGS funded program – Restoration Assessment & Monitoring Program for the Southwest (RAMPS) which seeks to gather and analyse data to improve restoration success in this arid region (collaborators: Seth Munson & John Bradford, USGS, Flagstaff, AZ, Brad Butterfield, NAU). My current role is to analyze a large dataset of vegetation treatments on Bureau of Land Management lands in the region to identify use and change in restoration-oriented methods and goals over the last ~70 years.

Climate Change and Land-Use Change in the Colorado Plateau (USGS)

The goal of this project is to characterize past, present, and future land-use and climate changes in the Colorado Plateau. We (John Bradford, USGS, Flagstaff, AZ, Mike Duniway, USGS, Moab, UT, Rudy Schuster, Nina Burkardt, Eric Larsen, USGS, Fort Collins, CO) particularly want to know which resources and regions are especially vulnerable to the combination of climate warming and land-use and population growth. I am also testing the impact of the combination of land-use and facilitation on migration of dominant forest species in response to climate change with a range of migration and climate scenarios and species distribution models.

Past Projects

Severe Drought + California’s Diverse Flora (UC Davis)

Can we predict the effects of severe drought on plant communities with information from past experiments? From observational studies? How do the spatial and temporal scale of our measurements affect our predictions? I addressed these questions by measuring the response of native plant communities across California to a severe drought in collaboration with Susan Harrison, Andrew Latimer, Ellen Damschen, Marko Spasojevic, Barbara Fernandez, Brian Anacker, and Anu Eskelinen.

Microclimate, Interactions, Soils -> Plant Distribution

For my PhD in Ecology at UC Davis, I investigated how microclimate, soil properties, and interactions between neighboring plants, or between plants and symbiotic fungi, affect plant distribution in the Klamath-Siskiyou mountains.

Changing Precipitation + Nitrogen Deposition + Neotropical Savannas

I studied how changing precipitation regimes and nitrogen affect grasses in the Brazilian Cerrado (savanna) for my Master’s with Emilio Bruna (University of Florida) in collaboration with Michelle Mack (Univ. of Northern Arizona), Heraldo Vasconcelos and Laura Barbosa Silva (Universidade Federal de Uberlândia).


I also have a special fondness for orchids. I have studied Andean cloud forest orchids and fungal associations and distribution patterns of ladyslipper species (Cypripedium).