Tala Awada is an associate professor in the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s School of Natural Resources, where she has been an SNR faculty member for the last nine years. Her particular areas of research interest include grassland/forest ecology, plant ecophysiology, water relations and gas exchange.
- Ph.D., Department of Plant Sciences, University of Saskatchewan, Canada, 2000.
- M.S., Environmental and Renewable Resources, Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania, Greece, 1995.
- B.S., Agricultural Engineering, Lebanese University, Lebanon, 1992.
Examples of Current Research:
My current research focuses on understanding the impacts of woody species expansion on ecosystem functions in the Sandhills with emphasis on water, carbon and grasslands health. More specifically, I am
- investigating the impacts of Pinus ponderosa and Juniperus virginiana expansion on rangeland species composition, productivity and forage quality;
- determining water use of invasive woody species in upland (Sandhills), and riparian (Republican River) areas of Nebraska using sap flux techniques;
- studying the spatial and seasonal patterns of water uptake in native grasses and invasive woody species using oxygen and hydrogen isotopes;
- determining stand level evapotranspiration in invaded areas;
- investigating environmental controls over water and carbon assimilations in native grasses and woody invasive species; and
- studying the impacts of proposed climate change scenarios on the potential future distributions of invasive woody species in Nebraska and surrounding areas.
Internationally, I am collaborating with researchers in Greece to investigate the impacts of climate change on Mediterranean pine forests.
I teach the Introduction to Forest Management (NRES 310), and Plant Ecophysiology: theory and practice (NRES 406/806) courses. Internationally, I visit the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania, Greece every fall (since 2004) to teach a week-long course on Plant Stress Physiology.
- Bihmidine, S., Bryan, N.M., Payne, K.R., Parde, M.R., Okalebo, J.A., Cooperstein, S.E., and Awada, T. (2010). Photosynthetic performance of invasive Pinus ponderosa and Juniperus virginiana seedlings under gradual soil water depletion. Plant Biology In Press.
- Eggemeyer, K.D., Awada, T., Harvey, F.E., Wedin, D., Zhou, X. and Zanner, R. (2009). Seasonal Changes in depth of water uptake for encroaching trees Juniperus virginiana and Pinus ponderosa and two dominant C4 grasses in a semi-arid grassland. Tree Physiology 29:157-169.
- Rupe, A.D. and Awada, T. (2008). Results of a twenty-two year old progeny test of a Pinus sylvestris plantation in eastern Nebraska. RURALS 3(1): art 3. 1- 17.
- Awada, T. and Josiah, S. (2007). Physiological responses of four hazelnut hybrids to water availability in Nebraska. Great Plains Research 14:193-202.
- Zhou, X.H., Brandle, J.R., Schoeneberger, M.M. and Awada, T. (2007) Developing above-ground biomass equations for open-grown multiple-stemmed tree species: Shelterbelt grown Russian-olive. Ecological Modelling 202: 311-323.
- Eggemeyer, K.D., Awada, T., Wedin, D., Harvey, F.E. and Zhou, X. (2006). Physiology of two native invasive woody species and two dominant warm-season grasses in the semiarid grasslands of the Nebraska Sandhills. International Journal of Plant Sciences 167: 991-999.
- Samartzidis, C., Awada, T., Maloupa, E., Radouglou, K. and Constantinidou, H. (2005). Rose productivity and physiological responses to different substrates for soil-less culture. Scienta Horticulturae 106: 203-212.
- Awada, T., Henebry, G.M., Redmann, R.E. and Sulistiyowati, H. (2004). Picea glauca dynamics and spatial pattern of seedlings regeneration along a chronosequence in the mixedwood section of the boreal forest. Annals of Forest Science 61:789-794.
- Awada, T., Radoglou, K., Fotelli, M. and Constantinidou, H. (2003). Ecophysiology of seedlings of three Mediterranean pine species in contrasting light regimes. Tree Physiology 23: 33-42.