Agriculture is at the intersection of major global challenges for the 21st century. There is a growing need to increase food security and production. Mounting demand for bioenergy, biomaterials, and naturalized areas for recreation is also placing pressure on food production systems. At the same time, the intensive practices credited for improving production have degraded the environment, eroded ecosystem services and threaten the potential to sustain further increases in yield. There is an incredible need to understand the tradeoffs inherent in diversifying and optimizing farming systems for food and bioenergy production in ways that also support ecosystem services. This thesis explores tradeoffs in two systems. The first is an integrative system that seeks to manage perennial crop bioenergy, natural enemies, and pests. The second is a study of the invasion risk of selectively breeding switchgrass for bioenergy production.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. 2015. Major: Applied Plant Sciences. Advisors: Gregg Johnson, Donald Wyse. 1 computer file (PDF); xiv, 147 pages.
Invasion, bioenergy, and natural enemies of insect pests: Ecological and agricultural tradeoffs in two study systems.
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