The Plant Evolutionary Ecology Lab in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science at the Ohio State University is directed by Dr. Kristin Mercer. In general, we study plant evolutionary ecology within agricultural systems. Of primary focus is the way that dynamics of ecological processes and evolutionary forces influence important issues in agricultural sustainability, such as conservation of crop genetic resources in centers of origin and biosafety of genetically modified crops.

Please check out the website for more information on specific projects, the resulting publications, and the people that make it happen.


  1. Welcome Keyvan Maleki!

    Aug 31, 2022

    Keyvan is joining our lab as a doctoral student working on the USDA-funded Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, "Nitrogen fixation in Zea through domestication, spread, and improvement in the
    Americas." He joins us from the University of Tehran, where he got his M.S. in Agronomy and Plant Ecology. Welcome Keyvan!

  2. Congratulations Hannah!

    Jun 24, 2022

    Congratulations to Hannah Scheppler for passing her doctoral candidacy exams in June, 2022!  Well done, Hannah!

  3. Congratulations Anna!

    Apr 12, 2022

    Anna Baltisberger, an undergraduate majoring in Sustainable Plant Systems with a specialization in Agroecology, successfully defended her Honors Thesis. Anna will be graduating with research distinction in May 2022 and focused her thesis on studying the ability of Mexican landraces to produce aerial roots that host nitrogen fixing bacteria in a greenhouse controlled environment. She was a recipient of the Will C. Hauk Memorial Scholarship Fund, which supported her research. Congratulations Anna!