Our laboratory is investigating the role of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) in promoting plant growth and nutrient uptake of small fruit crops with an emphasis on grapevines.
We are currently assessing the taxonomic and functional diversity of AMF that live within the roots of grapevines in order to understand which fungi (or groups of fungi) are important for vine health under specific environmental constraints (nutrient stress, water stress, nematode pressure, soil type, etc.).
The impact of management practices such as fertilizers, irrigation, and cover crops on roots, AMF, and vine physiology is also being studied to define best management practices for optimal plant health and fruit quality.
Our work extends to improving our understanding of how specific plant nutrients (N, P, K) alter vine growth and fruit quality of Pinot Noir grown in Oregon’s climate to provide growers with better leaf/petiole concentration guidelines for vine nutrition management.