Soil and Crop Research Focus

Our research programs reflect Coloradoan’s concerns on food production and livestock feed growth and utilization. Our work prioritizes efficient land and water resource use while maintaining high-quality agricultural, residential, industrial, and natural environments.

To meet our broad-based objectives, we work in cooperation with other segments of the University, state, federal and private agencies.

Seminar Series

We conduct weekly seminar presentations on our most current research and issues in soil and crop sciences. Email Jeanie Roberts for more information.

State-Wide Research Locations

Our department coordinates research programs in four of the College’s research centers. Each center is located in distinct agro-climatic areas throughout Colorado. We ensure our programs are designed to meet specific needs of farmers and ranchers in their respective areas and ensure our students get unique off-campus learning and research opportunities.

Prospective Graduate Students

We encourage our prospective graduate students to reach out to our research faculty and discuss your research interests. Our graduate program is unique in that our department requires our graduate students to have confirmed a faculty advisor prior to being accepted to our graduate program. Please browse our research areas and learn more about our faculty to find the right fit for your interests.

Agroecosystems Research

We emphasize the need to incorporate solutions for climate change with every research project we develop. Our work focuses on efficient soil and crop development, carbon and nutrient cycling, and innovating biofuels and biosolids.

Research Facilities and Partnerships


Plant Breeding and Genetics

We focus on understanding how climate change will affect crops and how we can enhance nutrition and hardiness in important crop varieties.

Research Facilities and Partnerships


Soil Science

Colorado is rich in diverse soil systems and landscapes giving us a unique lens to view our research. We work in agricultural, forest, and rangelands. Being situated on the Colorado Front Range also allows us to study the effects of urbanization on rural soil and water environments.


Research Facilities and Partnerships

Soil and Crop Sciences Affiliated Research Centers

Agricultural Research, Development and Education Center

The collaborative hub in northern Colorado for large-scale, integrated agricultural research.

Southwestern Colorado Research Center

High-elevation crop productivity, irrigation and harvest techniques, and soil development and preservation are our primary focus areas.

Plainsman Research Center

Focused research optimizing limited water resources and optimizing grain and seed crops for our regional growing conditions.

Western Colorado Research Center

Our faculty investigate soil development and preservation, optimizing irrigation, cropping systems, and high-elevation growing.

Soil and Crop Sciences Faculty Laboratories

Mike Wilkins Lab


Steven Fonte Lab

Agroecosystems Ecology

Sally Jones-Diamond Lab

Crops Testing

Francesca Cotrufo Lab

Ecosystems Ecology

Geoff Morris Lab

Crop Quantitative Genomics

Jessica Davis Lab

Pulse Agronomy

Kelly Wrighton Lab

Soil Microbiomes

Thomas Borch Lab

Environmental and Agricultural Chemistry

Allan Andales Lab

WISE Irrigation

Jim Ippolito Lab

Soil Health and Environmental Quality

Nathan Mueller Lab

Agricultural Sustainability and Climate Change Impacts

Jane Zelikova

Soil Carbon Solutions

Meagan Schipanski Lab

Cropping Systems

Jay Ham Lab


Esten Mason Lab

Wheat Breeding and Genetics

Keith Paustian Lab

Soil Ecology, COMET-Farm

Joe Brummer Lab

Forage Science