photo Carolyn H. Keiffer , Professor
Miami University: Department of Botany
114 Levey Hall, Middletown Campus
Middletown , OH , 45042 United States
(513) 727-3243


(1996) Ohio University

Areas of Expertise

Plant physiological ecology, restoration ecology, American Chestnut ecology, and phytoremediation

Research Interests

My research interests include both laboratory and field investigations of the ecology of plants in extreme environments in an effort to select plants which are suitable for phytoremediation and restoration. I have successfully used native halophyte plants to reclaim salt contaminated soils in Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas.

I have been involved with the American Chestnut Foundation for several years and have recently established a grove of blight resistant American Chestnut trees on stripmines in Ohio. Some of the trees have been inoculated with mycorrhizae and we will follow the growth and survival of these trees for the next several seasons. A long-term study of a disjunct population of American Chestnut trees in Wisconsin is also underway. We are specifically examining the genetics and founder effects (n=11) of this isolated population, which has grown to over 5,000 individuals.

Related studies involving graduate and undergraduate students include restoration work at Fernald (a former DOE uranium processing facility), a phytoremediation project at a brownfield site in Canada, and a reforestation project at a closed landfill in Cincinnati Ohio.

Selected Publications

Pierson, S.W., C.H. Keiffer, B.C. McCarthy, and S.H. Rogstad. 2007. Rapid loss of genetic diversity does not always occur following limited reintroduction: an example from the American chestnut. Restoration Biology - in press.

McEwan, R.W., C.H. Keiffer, and B.C. McCarthy. 2006. Dendroecology of American chestnut in a disjunct stand of oak-chestnut forest. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 36: 1-11.

Athy, E.R., Stevens, M.H., and C.H. Keiffer. 2006. Effects of Mulch on Seedlings and Soil on a Closed Landfill. Restoration Ecology. 14 (2), 233-241.

Steele, M.A., B.C. McCarthy, and C.H. Keiffer. 2005. Seed Dispersal, Seed Predation, and the American Chestnut The Journal of the American Chestnut Foundation. 19(2):47-54.

Leary, C.I. and C.H. Keiffer. April 2004. Comparison of Standing Vegetation and Seed Bank Composition 1 Year Following Hardwood Reforestation in Southwestern Ohio. Ohio Journal of Science. 104:20-28.

Leary, C.I., C.H. Keiffer, and B.C. McCarthy. June, 2003. A reforestation approach in Southwestern Ohio: Results and Recommendations. Restoration Ecology Vol. 21 Issue 2, p126, 26p.

Keiffer, C.H. and I.A. Ungar. 2002. Germination and Establishment of Halophytes on Brine Effected Soils. Journal of Applied Ecology. 39:402-415.

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