Ariana E. Sutton-Grier

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Low soil organic matter (SOM) levels can limit nutrient cycling and plant growth in restored wetlands. This study examined how the addition of different amounts of compost at a restoration site in Charlotte, North Carolina, affected the development of soil properties, microbial communities, and plant growth and diversity. The stream and wetland restoration(More)
We are at a key juncture in history where biodiversity loss is occurring daily and accelerating in the face of population growth, climate change, and rampant development. Simultaneously, we are just beginning to appreciate the wealth of human health benefits that stem from experiencing nature and biodiversity. Here we assessed the state of knowledge on(More)
BACKGROUND Denitrification is an important ecosystem service that removes nitrogen (N) from N-polluted watersheds, buffering soil, stream, and river water quality from excess N by returning N to the atmosphere before it reaches lakes or oceans and leads to eutrophication. The denitrification enzyme activity (DEA) assay is widely used for measuring(More)
Ecosystem and biogeochemical responses to anthropogenic stressors are the result of complex interactions between plants and microbes. A mechanistic understanding of how plant traits influence microbial processes is needed in order to predict the ecosystem-level effects of natural or anthropogenic change. This is particularly true in wetland ecosystems,(More)
The concept of nature as capital is gaining visibility in policies and practices in both the public and private sectors. This change is due to an improved ability to assess and value ecosystem services, as well as to a growing recognition of the potential of an ecosystem services approach to make tradeoffs in decision making more transparent, inform(More)
One of ecology's grand challenges is developing general rules to explain and predict highly complex systems. Understanding and predicting ecological processes from species' traits has been considered a 'Holy Grail' in ecology. Plant functional traits are increasingly being used to develop mechanistic models that can predict how ecological communities will(More)
Global biodiversity loss has prompted research on the relationship between species diversity and ecosystem functioning. Few studies have examined how plant diversity impacts belowground processes; even fewer have examined how varying resource levels can influence the effect of plant diversity on microbial activity. In a field experiment in a restored(More)
Critical Zone (CZ) research investigates the chemical, physical, and biological processes that modulate the Earth's surface. Here, we advance 12 hypotheses that must be tested to improve our understanding of the CZ: (1) Solar-to-chemical conversion of energy by plants regulates flows of carbon, water, and nutrients through plant-microbe soil networks,(More)
Plants may have dissimilar effects on ecosystem processes because they possess different attributes. Given increasing biodiversity losses, it is important to understand which plant traits are key drivers of ecosystem functions. To address this question, we studied the response of two ecosystem functions that remove nitrogen (N) from wetland soils, the(More)
There is a paucity of data in the published literature on the ecological and economic impacts of derelict fishing traps (DFTs) in coastal ecosystems. We synthesized results from seven NOAA-funded trap fisheries studies around the United States and determined that DFT-caused losses to habitat and harvestable annual catch are pervasive, persistent, and(More)