Jonathan Bauer


Assistant Professor

392 Pearson Hall

Biographical Information

Our lab is focused on plant ecology, with particular interest in plant interactions with bacteria and fungi and application to ecological restoration and sustainable agriculture.  Our research includes a combination of field experiments and observations, greenhouse experiments on plant community mesocosms, and laboratory analyses of soils and microbial communities.  Ongoing projects include:

  • Predictive Ecology – We are testing the mechanisms that shape the outcomes of ecological restoration, including the effects of management history, soil conditions, and plant × microbial interactions. With this understanding, we are working toward developing models that can forecast the outcomes of ecological restoration.
  • Interacting Symbioses – Partnering with beneficial bacteria and fungi can be an essential strategy for plants to acquire nutrients. These partnerships can be affected both by competition among mutualists for the plant’s resources and by changes in the surrounding soil environment.  Since many plant species of conservation concern are reliant on mutualisms with bacteria and fungi, understanding the context dependency of these mutualisms may improve our ability to restore these plants to degraded environments.
  • Sustainable Agriculture – The productivity of crop plants can be strongly affected by microorganisms. We are beginning new research projects to understand how we can manage soils to promote beneficial microorganisms and limit the negative effects of soil pathogens.

Courses Taught

  • IES 278 Food Systems

Selected Publications

  • Bach, EM, G Narvaez-Rivera, K Murray, JT Bauer, and KS Hofmockel. 2018. The dynamic life of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal symbionts. Ecology 99:978-979
  • Bauer JT, L Koziol and JD Bever. 2018. Ecology of Floristic Quality Analysis: testing for correlations between coefficients of conservatism, species traits, and mycorrhizal responsiveness. AoB Plants 10:plx073
  • Flory, SF, JT Bauer, RP Phillips, and K Clay. 2017. Effects of a non-native grass decline with succession. Journal of Ecology 105:1475–1484
  • Whitaker, BW, JT Bauer, K Clay, and JD Bever. 2017. Negative plant-phyllosphere feedbacks in native Asteraceae hosts – a novel extension of the plant-soil feedback framework.  Ecology Letters 20:1064-1073
  • Bauer JT, AJ Miller, N Blumenthal, JK Ferguson, and HL Reynolds. 2017. Microbial legacy effects vs. plant-soil feedbacks: Effects on plant community composition and productivity. Journal of Applied Ecology 54:1028:1039
  • Brudvig, LA, RS Barak, JT Bauer, TT Caughlin, DC Laughlin, L Larios, JW Matthews, KL Stuble, NE Turley, and CR Zirbel. 2017. Interpreting variation to advance predictive restoration science. Journal of Applied Ecology 54:1018-1027
  • Bauer, JT and HL Reynolds. 2016. Restoring native understory to a woodland invaded by Euonymus fortunei: multiple factors affect success. Restoration Ecology 24:45-52
  • Bauer, JT, KLM Mack, and JD Bever. 2015. Plant-soil feedbacks as drivers of succession: Evidence from remnant and restored tallgrass prairies. Ecosphere 6:158
  • Bauer, JT, NM Kleczewski, JD Bever, K Clay and HL Reynolds. 2012. Nitrogen-fixing bacteria, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and the productivity and structure of prairie grassland communities. Oecologia. 170:1089-1098
  • Bauer, JT 2012. Invasive species: Back-seat drivers of ecosystem change? Biological Invasions. 7:1295-1304