Plant Imaging and Carbon Transformation

Research Group

Our vision

Plants mediate the uptake and eventual storage of atmospheric carbon in soil. Yet little is known about plant controls on the belowground processes that are key to the storage or emission of carbon. The goal of our lab is to understand plant physiology in natural and artificial environments (e.g. wetlands and agriculture) and elevate their contribution towards Canada’s ability to adapt to climate change by informing forward-looking decision-making.  

Research at Multiple Spatial Scales

Rhizosphere Research: How does root-borne carbon influence the soil microbial community and control carbon storage in wetlands?

Plant Research: Do aboveground vegetation traits and environmental conditions predict to the belowground root system?

Landscape Research: How does spatial-temporal variations in the environment affect the deposition of carbon and what are "average" fluxes?

Modelling: Pairing remote sensing surveys of vegetation traits, with powerful numerical modelling tools that simulate root growth and function

Methodological Approach

As the biophysical and biochemical structure of plants dictates their carbon uptake and deposition processes, our lab works from the plant overstory down to the root-soil-microbial system, and investigate carbon transformation spatially, both at the landscape scale and within constrained micro-spatial niches. Understanding the magnitude and composition of carbon flowing through various pools calls for an integrative research strategies, such as pairing remote sensing surveys of plant traits with powerful numerical modelling tools that simulate plant growth and function.

Whether it be the sweeping eagle in his flight, or the open apple-blossom, the toiling work-horse, the blithe swan, the branching oak, the winding stream at its base, the drifting clouds, over all the coursing sun, form ever follows function, and this is the law.

Louis Sullivan

Contact us

Please feel free to contact us to inquire about our current and future projects. 

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