Schwinning Lab

Plant Ecology

Yang Tse

How you can join the lab

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Much of our lab work is conducted by undergraduate students.

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Graduate students support each other in conducting field experiments.

Our lab welcomes undergraduate and graduate students. Undergraduate students work as research technicians and learn to perform field research, lab analysis and data management. Undergraduate students are fully integrated lab members and gain an insider's perspective on ecological research. Along with the graduate students, they are mentored in matters of career planning and development. Exceptional students are encouraged to conduct independent research projects towards an undergraduate thesis. Being a undergraduate research assistant is a valuable experience for any student entering a research-oriented profession or continuing their education in a graduate program.

Graduate students wishing to pursue research in Plant Ecology are encouraged to discuss their research interests and career goals with Susan Schwinning before applying. Preference will be given to students with a strong academic record, course work in plant ecology and physiology and with interests that fit the research focus of the lab. Master's and Ph.D. students are partially supported through teaching scholarships in the Department of Biology. Research scholarships, if available, are announced on this website.




Lab News

Recent student presentations

Nathan Custer presented on his research at the Ecological Society of America Meeting in Portland. The title of his presentation was "Effect of transplant size on early survivorship". The paper was presented in a session on "Multiple Common Garden Experiments for Meeting Restoration Challenges: Difficulties and Potential Pitfalls" organized by Susanne Schwinning and Lesley DeFalco.

Highlighted publications

Schwinning, S., Meckel, H., Reichmann, L.G., Polley, H.W., Fay, P.A. 2017. Accelerated development in Johnsongrass seedlings (Sorghum halepense) suppresses the growth of native grasses through size-asymmetric competition. PLOS ONE 12, 20176042 pdf

Dammeyer, H.C., Schwinning, S., Schwartz, B., Moore, G. 2016. Effects of juniper removal and rainfall variation on tree transpiration in a semi-arid karst: Evidence of complex water storage dynamics. Hydrological Processes 30: 4568-4581. pdf

Other lab news

The lab welcomes two new graduate students:

Kayla Sustaita will examine the effects of adaptive rotational grazing on soil characteristics.

Logan Maxwell will investigate best restoration practices for abandoned oil and gas exploration fields in Utah.

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 the media

In August 2016, Susan was interviewed by Salwa Khan for the Wimberley Valley Radio show "Mothering Earth" Listen to the podcast here.

In September 2013, Susan was interviewed by Alan Knapp on a paper published in Functional Ecology. Listen to the podcast here.

Contact information
Susan Schwinning
601 University Drive
312 Supple Science Bldg
Texas State University
San Marcos, TX 78666, USA
Phone: (512) 245-3753
Fax: (512) 245-8713

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Biology Department
Texas State University

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Comments on the contents of this site should be directed to Susan Schwinning