Impacts of Plant-growth Promoting Rhizobacteria (PGPR) on Bermudagrass
Murphey Coy, Ph.D. student
Determine PGPR that provide growth promotion in bermudagrass
Evaluate those blends for impacts on FAW and associated parasitoids
Evaluate the impacts of PGPR on abiotic (drought mitigation) and biotic stress (root feeding) in turfgrass
Publications from Murphey’s work
Impacts of Native and Non-native Suburban Plant Species on Insects
Scott Clem, Master’s Student
Many regions of the United States are now occupied by a large variety of non-native plant species both invasive and non-invasive. While it is well known that most non-native plants produce fewer herbivores than natives, most suburban landscapes are artificially planted with a mixture of natives and non-natives. This begs the question: is the abundance of herbivorous insects influenced by associational interactions between native and non-native plants occurring in suburban landscapes?
Associational Resistance (AR) and Association Susceptibility (AS) are widely cited concepts in ecology and are used to better understand the relationship between an herbivore and its host plant in various plant community contexts. In this study, I am investigating the roles that AR and AS play in mediating herbivore and natural enemy abundance and diversity on the native red maple (Acer rubrum), when either native or non-native neighbor plants are present.
This is being achieved in a multi-year field experiment in which eruciform larvae and their natural enemies are being monitored on native plants when provided neighboring plants that vary in origin (native vs. non-native) and relatedness (congener vs. non-congener).
Publications from Scott’s work
Activities of detoxification enzymes in a generalist herbivore in response to host plants and diet mixing.
B.S. Crop Production and Protection
Minor: Agricultural Entomology (Obafemi Awolowo University, Osun state Nigeria)
From: Lagos, Nigeria
Our lab is collaborating with Dr. Nannan Liu, worldwide expert in insect enzyme systems on this project. What are the enzymes involved, and their roles in successful utilization of chemically defended host plants by the generalist insect herbivore?
Cytochrome P450, Glutathione S transferase and Carboxylesterase.
Model insect: Japanese beetle, Popillia japonica
Changes in the activities of detoxification enzymes across different life stages
Monophagy Vs Polyphagy; the role of detoxification enzymes in generalism by insect herbivore.
Tissue specific activities of detoxification enzymes
The Achilles heel; the Geranium intoxication of Japanese beetle.
Larry is a Research Technician in our program.
Development and validation of a detection test kit for pest ambrosia beetles.
MS student and Diagnostician in the ACES Plant Diagnostic Lab
Ambrosia beetles are small pest beetles that attack trees as wood borers. The small size and diversity of beetles that can be trapped makes it difficult to determine when species of concern are present. This project builds on technologies developed in an USDA-SCRI funded project. A test kit would enable nursery producers, foresters and urban foresters to rapidly determine the species of beetles present without microscopy or expertise in insect taxonomy. This technology can help reduce pesticide inputs in the environment and save money for tree nurseries.