Teaching and Development

  • AGRC2013 Agricultural Microbiology and Gene Technology
  • AGRC1020 Animal Biology
  • AGRC1021 Plant Biology
  • AGRC1040 Food for a Healthy Planet
  • BIOL3011 Plant Microbe and Insect Interactions
  • PLNT2011 Plant and Environmental Health
  • PLNT7014 Principles of Integrated Pest Management
  • PLNT3009/7005 Plant Protection

Researcher biography

I identify myself as a plant pathologist specialising in the study of fungal pathogens of all manner of plants from agricultural and natural settings. My research career has spanned various areas of interest from horticulural diseases, the development of disease forecasting systems, the study of soil mycorrhizal fungi, the use of beneficial microbes in promoting soil health and plant disease management and the scholarship of teaching and learning.

A key area of development has been the investigation of dieback disorders of invasive woody weeds in the Australian landscape. This has resulted in the development of a bioherbicide for the invasive weed Parkinsonia and the establishment of a start-up company BioHerbicides Australia. This company now produces this bioherbicide and has developed a range of synthetic herbicide products along with the delivery technology required for field implementation. My research team bioprospects for new control agents for a range of woody weeds (there are many) and explores the use of synthetic herbicides also. My research takes me to many interesting locations in outback Queensland, the Northern Territory, Western Australia and New South Wales. I am interested in many weed species including mimosa bush, chinee apple, celtis, prickly acacia, athel pine, mesquite and various cacti.

I have been Deputy Head of School (Gatton) since 2013 where my main function has been to support the HoS as we develop this school through a process of growth and change with recruitment of new staff, development of new processes and teams and create a true sense of collegiality across both campus locations. We have taken Agriculture at UQ from an international ranking of #7 in 2016 to #2 in 2021. Apart from administrative tasks, my key role is to support and develop new staff to settle into their academic jobs, assist them with achieving milestones and probation and manage their development of KPIs and career development.

Areas of research