interests: I study the effects of environmental heterogeneity
on the ecological and evolutionary dynamics of organisms, and how
phenotypic plasticity mediates these effects. For my
dissertation, I studied how plasticity in plant defenses, which
include induced chemical/physical defenses and tolerance, is under
selection by insect herbivores. Specifically, I examined whether
the evolution of these defenses in the perennial weed Solanum carolinense is constrained by costs of
plasticity, genetic correlations, or trade-offs involving
resistance to multiple herbivores.
I am currently
how variation in competitor density and frequency affects various
aspects of Solanum carolinense reproduction, including pollinator
visitation, seed production, and biomass.