Post-doc | Dunn Lab and Frank Lab
I study tree ecology and physiology, from street trees to natural forests.
As an ecophysiologist, I study forest dynamics, acclimation, and adaptation in the context of climate change. I combine manipulative experiments that involve physiological and biochemical measurements on individual trees with long-term forest monitoring, and I employ naturally occurring environmental gradients (such as temperature, precipitation, elevation) to investigate and forecast changes in tree physiology and forest ecology. For example, measurements of carbon storage of individual trees can be used to understand community- and population-level forest insect outbreaks, and landscape-level forest dynamics and carbon sequestration. At the same time, differences in temperature or precipitation across a naturally occurring gradient can be used to understand and predict the responses of mature in situ trees to climate change. At NCSU, I am investigating tree water stress in response higher temperatures, by measuring a suite of physiological variables for urban and rural trees with contrasting life history strategies (a species with a long lifespan and a slow growth rate versus a species with a short lifespan and a fast growth rate).