Plant-microbe interactions and feedbacks are important but cryptic components of how ecosystems function and respond to change. Microbes play a significant role structuring plant communities through positive and negative interactions, and the diversity of soil microbiota controls the processes governing biogeochemical cycling in soils. As we consider the threat of species loss and how plant communities will continue to shift under rapidly altered temperature and precipitation regimes, understanding these feedbacks emerges as a critical focus for plant community ecology, ecosystem science, and conservation ecology.
Working across a range of ecosystems from lowland Neotropical and high elevation conifer forests to semi-arid grasslands, our research group uses a combination of ecological experiments, microbiological techniques, and contemporary genetic and metagenomic tools to develop hypotheses to test the effects of plant-microbe interactions on plant community richness and species abundance, understand how environmental shifts will alter these interactions, and accurately predict the subsequent impacts on ecosystem function.
Rachel Gallery is an Assistant Professor in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment (SNRE) at the University of Arizona located in the diverse and beautiful Sonoran desert. We welcome contact from prospective collaborators, lab members, and others.
Rachel Gallery and Kathryn Docherty's EcoInformatics course using CyVerse was featured in the Arizona Daily Star!
Alex Morano presented her work through the Honors College Biosphere 2 Internship program. Great job Alex!
Dawson Fairbanks received a Carson Scholarship! She joins an excellent program of graduate students committed to interdisciplinary research and communication in honor of Rachel Carson. Congratulations Dawson!
In recognition of her outstanding undergraduate academic achievement, Cait Boyer was awarded CALS Academic Distinction. Well done Cait!
Student-led publication from our RNR 696A: Ecoinformatics course is published in PLOS ONE! doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0135352
iPlant news feature by Shelley Littin.
Martha Gebhardt was awarded a UA GPSC travel grant to attend AGU this year. Congratulations Martha!
Post-doctoral researcher Rebecca Lybrand was recently offered a tenure-track position at Oregon State University in pedology to begin in the spring. Congratulations Rebecca!
Gayle Purdy recently graduated with her Master's in Applied Biosciences with an emphasis in Industrial Microbial Biotechnology. Congratulations Gayle! She will be heading to Purdue University in Lafayette Indiana.
Martha Gerbhardt successfully defended her Master's thesis looking at plant amendment effects on native plant re-establishment in arid lands. She will stay to begin her PhD work. Congratulations Martha!
Dawson Fairbanks received the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program award studying soil microbiology in the Critical Zone and Noelle Espinosa received honorable mention. Congratulations Dawson and Noelle!
Noelle Espinosa receives Sky School Outreach Fellowship where she will participate in immersive residiential science programs on Mount Lemmon's SkyCenter campus in the Coronado National Forest. Congratulations Noelle!
Maggie Murphy becomes the first accelerated Master's student in the department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science co-advised with Rachel Gallery and Virginia Rich. Welcome Maggie!