Associate Professor of Soil Science
Plant, Soil, and Entomological Sciences
Dr. Jodi Johnson-Maynard received a MS in Soil Science from the University of Idaho and a PhD in Soil and Water Sciences from the University of California, Riverside. Jodi’s research is focused on earthworm ecology, carbon and nitrogen cycling and soil-plant interactions. She also advises undergraduate and graduate students and teaches Soil 205, The Soil Ecosystem. For the past five years Jodi has served on the Idaho Carbon Sequestration Advisory Committee, a group focused on outreach and education relating to carbon sequestration and credit trading. more info
Current research in our laboratory on native earthworms is directly related to CRISSP since it deals with small (extremely small) populations. Earthworm populations in the Palouse region are dominated by exotic species. Through some combination of land use change and competition with introduced species, native earthworms are rare and appear to occur in isolated patches. Further research is needed to better understand the ecology of native species and the factors that have contributed to their decline. Another area of interest in our laboratory is the co-evolution of plants and soils. The ability of some invasive plant species, a main focus of CRISSP, to alter soil conditions once they are established has been documented. Chemical and physical changes occurring in the soil after invasion may benefit the invasive plant. In parts of the Clearwater National Forest in Idaho bracken fern invades following timber harvest. Once bracken is established natural conifer regeneration is virtually non-existent. We have been studying the ability of bracken fern to alter soil chemical properties as a mechanism to explain the lack of secondary succession within these areas. Better knowledge of the role that soil plays in biological invasions may lead to better methods of predication and control.
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