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Soil Research

The interactive webmap on the home page of this website has an option to show information of the soil type. Why is this important to our Phragmites project?

The soil microbial community plays a vital role in the impacts of Phragmites, because it is the means by which plant biomass is decomposed. The herbicides used to manage phragmites throughout this project may directly or indirectly modify the microbial community in the soil, either by the application itself or by modifying the vegetation type.

Assessing micorbial diversity at treated and untreated sites can help track functional changes in wetland ecosystems after treatment. This also may lead to key new insights on invasive species ecology and possibly new and effective control approaches. Through analysis, we can identify bacteria that contribute to the decomposition of the target plants, and also break-down of the herbicides used to control them. 
 

Two main questions of study:

1: Do residual effects of herbicides affect microbial communities?
2: What is the expected diversity of microbial communities after repeated Phragmites treatments?

How will we accomplish this?

Lisa Grubisha

Dr. Grubisha is a professor at UWGB, specializing in microbial diversity and conservation ecology. She will be heading the research on soil microbial diversity.

Earth Microbiome Project

This project is a resource for us which gives us guidelines on how to proceed with this objective.