Kelly Craven, Ph.D.
A confluence of events including an increase in population from 7 billion people to 11 billion by 2100 and a dwindling world supply of arable crop land and rock phosphate necessitate efforts to produce more food with less resources.
We aim to utilize and optimize the plant microbiome (together with the plant and environment referred to as "the phytobiome") to more effectively provide nutrients to plants and to maintain or improve crop productivity with less agronomic inputs (fertilizer, water).
- Dissecting native microbiomes associated with current best agronomic practices (no-till, cover cropping); early establishment of food, forage, and bioenergy crops; and the introduction of beneficial microbes
- Plant-microbe signaling involving serendipitoid mycorrhizae
- Deployment and performance evaluation of endophytic microbes on forage crops in a complex, living field environment