Michelle Pruyn

Michelle Pruyn
Associate Professor of Biology
Graduate Program Advisor for Biology

Phone:(603) 535-3320
E-mail: mlpruyn@plymouth.edu


I am a woody tree eco-physiologist, researching the various controls of tree species distributions in the northern hardwood forest. Most recently, we are investigating the long term effects of acid rain on tree health and productivity. I am also interested the physiological differences among tree species along natural environmental gradients, such as elevation, aspect and changing soil characteristics. I have experience in measuring respiration of components of individual trees and ecosystems with the objective of estimating whole tree and ecosystem respiration. I have researched how trees respond to wind stress in terms of their anatomy, morphology and physiology with the application for managing hybrid tree plantations for a specific product, like paper. I have studied forest science and wood science, and have an understanding of applied aspects of forest ecology, such as modeling carbon flow from cradle to grave for a particular forest pro duct, monitoring changes in tree phenology in the context of climate change, with interests in phytoremediation, ethnobotany and traditional ecological knowledge.

Degrees and Education
  • PhD, Oregon State University
  • MS, Michigan State University
  • BS, University of Chicago
Research Interests
  • Forest Tree Ecophysiology and Ecology, Carbon Budgets of Ecosystems, Phytoremediation, Phenology and Climate Change, Ethnobotany and Traditional Ecological Knowledge
Recent Publications
  • Zahor, L., M.B. Green, M.L. Pruyn, and G. Wilson. 2013. The Impact of Calcium on Transpiration in an Acid Rain Impacted Forest. National SAF Convention: Silviculture Matters, October 23-27, North Charleston, SC. (presentation)
  • Pruyn, M.L. and R. Spicer. 2012. Parenchyma. In: eLS 2012, John Wiley & Sons Ltd: Chichester http://www.els.net/ [DOI: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0002083.pub2]
  • Domec, J.C., B.L. Lachenbruch, M.L. Pruyn and R. Spicer. 2012. Effects of age-related increases in sapwood area, leaf area, and xylem conductivity on height-related hydraulic costs in two contrasting coniferous species. Annals of For Sci. 69:17–27. DOI 10.1007/s13595-011-0154-3
  • Butnor J.R., M.L. Pruyn, D.C. Shaw, M.E. Harmon, A.N. Mucciardi and M.G. Ryan. 2009. Detecting defects in conifers with ground penetrating radar: applications and challenges. For. Path. 39:309-322
  • Domec, J.C. and M.L. Pruyn. 2008. Bole girdling affects metabolic properties and root, trunk and branch hydraulics of young ponderosa pine trees. Tree Physiol. 28:1493-1504
  • Pruyn, M.L., B.L. Gartner & M.E. Harmon. 2005. Storage vs. substrate limitation to bole respiratory potential in two coniferous tree species of contrasting sapwood width. J Exp Bot. 56:2637-2649
  • Pruyn, M.L., B.L. Gartner & M.E. Harmon. 2002. Within stem variation of respiratory potential in Pseudotsuga menziesii (Douglas-fir) trees. New Phytol. 154 (2): 359-372.
  • Pruyn, M.L., B.L. Gartner & M.E. Harmon. 2002. Respiratory potential in old versus young ponderosa pine trees in the Pacific Northwest. Tree Physiol. 22 (2/3): 105-116.
  • Pruyn, M.L., B.J. Ewers III & F.W. Telewski. 2000. Thigmomorphogenesis: changes in the morphology and mechanical properties of two Populus hybrids in response to mechanical perturbation. Tree Physiol. 20:535-540
  • Telewski, F.W. & M.L. Pruyn. 1998. Thigmomorphogenesis: a dose response to flexing in Ulmus americana seedlings. Tree Physiol. 18:65-68
Awards and Distinctions
  • Mentor and PI, CFE and Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest Summer REU Program, 2008-present
Associations, Boards, and Committees
  • Member, International Association of Wood Anatomists
  • Member, Center for the Environment, Plymouth State University
  • Collaborator, Education and the Environment Programs, Rey Center, Waterville Valley, NH
Courses Taught
  • Biological Sciences I (BI1110)
  • Evolution (BI3130)
  • Plant Physiology (BI4750)
  • Botany (BI2750)
  • Winter Ecology (BI 4060 & 5910)

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