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Jared DeForest

Jared DeForest, portrait
Professor & Chair
Porter 419

Recent News


Ph.D., University of Michigan, 2004

Other Websites

Forest Soil Ecology Lab

Optimized Lab Protocols for Testing Soils


My research goals are to improve our predictive understanding of how the physical environment alters the structure and function of ecosystems, either natural or anthropogenic. Most of my research involves investigating how soil microbes mediating the cycling of carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus and its impact on tree productivity based on mycorrhizal associations. One decade-long project involves understanding the role of elevated soil pH and/or phosphorus influencing soil microbial functional capacity and forest carbon sequestration. My research draws from soil science, ecosystem ecology, microbial ecology, and forestry. 


  • PBIO 4/5380: Soils & Ecosystems (Fall)
  • PBIO 2480 Dendrology (Spring)

Departmental Service

  • Department Chair

Professional Service

Selected References

Within the last 5 years:

Wagenknecht, R.L., DeForest, J.L., Linthicum, M., Roberts, D. and Snell, R.S., 2023. Tree regeneration response to a shifting soil nutrient economy depends on mycorrhizal association and age. Forest Ecology and Management DOI:

Smemo, K.A., Petersen, S.M., Kluber, L.A., Shaw, A.N., DeForest, J.L., 2021. Temporal soil enzyme patterns provide new insights into the nutrient economy of acidic hardwood forests. Biogeochemistry.

DeForest, J.L., Dorkoski, R., Freedman, Z.B., Smemo, K.A. (2021) Multi-year soil microbial and extracellular phosphorus enzyme response to lime and phosphate addition in temperate hardwood forests. Plant and Soil.

Mason, L.M., Eagar, A., Patel, P., Blackwood, C.B., DeForest, J.L., 2020. Potential microbial bioindicators of phosphorus mining in a temperate deciduous forest. Journal of Applied Microbiology, 130, 109-122.

DeForest, J.L. and Moorhead D.L. (2020) Effects of elevated pH and phosphorus fertilizer on the ecoenzymatic stoichiometry of organic and mineral soils in an acidic mixed mesophytic deciduous forest. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 150: 107996.

Dove, N.C., Arogyaswamy, K., Billings, S.A., Bothoff, J.K., Carey, C.J., Cisco, C., DeForest, J. L., Fairbanks, D., Fierer, N., Kaye, J.P., Lohse, K. A., Maltz, M.R., Mayora, E., Pett-Ridge, J., Yang, W.H., Hart, S.C., Aronson, E.L. (2020) Continental-scale patterns of extracellular enzyme activity in the subsoil: an overlooked reservoir of microbial activity. Environmental Research Letters, 15 1040a1.

DeForest, J.L. and Otuya, R.K. (2020). Soil nitrification increases with elevated phosphorus or soil pH in an acidic mixed mesophytic deciduous forest. Soil Biology & Biochemistry, 142: 107716.

DeForest, J.L., and Snell, R.S. (2020). Tree growth response to shifting soil nutrient economy depends on mycorrhizal associations. New Phytologist, 225:2557-2566.

DeForest, J.L. (2019). Chronic phosphorus enrichment and elevated pH suppresses Quercus spp. leaf litter decomposition in a temperate forest. Soil Biology & Biochemistry, 135:206-212.

Lavely, E. K., Zhang, Adams, T. S., Bryla, D., DeForest, J.L., Marini, R. P., Crassweller, R., Eissenstat, D. M. (2018). Root and mycorrhizal fungal foraging responses to fruit removal in apple trees. Plant and Soil, 431(1-2): 401-416. DOI: 10.1007/s11104-018-3773-8