Lynn C. Sweet

Lab Affiliate


     I am a plant ecologist, and my research centers on the establishment of plants in heterogeneous landscapes. My research is aimed at building knowledge about these novel species x climate and interspecific interactions. My primary research focus is the establishment of invasive plants into new landscapes. What are the abiotic and biotic (recipient community) characteristics conducive to or resistant to invasion?  Study focused on questions such as these may lead to better predictions of distribution and impacts of invasive species in new and changing landscapes.


     My second research focus is looking at the dynamic abiotic factors influencing recruitment of native species into new landscapes, due to a changing climate.  Building on this research, I am interested in investigating the degree to which current species assemblages may be maintained, along changing abiotic gradients.  Further, how will plant species respond to environments with novel combinations of moisture and temperature conditions?

     I received my BS in biology from Dickinson College in 2001 and my PhD in plant biology from the University of California, Riverside in 2011.  I was a post-doctoral researcher in the biogeography lab from September 2011 to December 2014, managing the NSF-funded project, "Do microenvironments govern macroecology?" I am now a lab affiliate, working for the Center for Conservation Biology at UC Riverside.

Recent Publications

Sweet, L. C. and J. S. Holt. (2015) “Establishment stage competition between exotic crimson fountain grass (Pennisetum setaceum, C4) and native purple needlegrass (Stipa pulchra, C3). Invasive Plant Science and Management. 18(2):139-150

Goring S., K. C. Weathers, W. K. Dodds, P. A. Sorrano, L. C. Sweet, K. S. Cheruvelil, J. S. Kominoski, J. Rüegg, A. M. Thorn and R. M. Utz. (2014)  “Improving the culture of interdisciplinary collaboration in ecology by expanding measures of success.” Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. 12(1):38-47

Dingman, J. R., L. C. Sweet, I. McCullough, F. W. Davis, A. Flint, J. Franklin and L. E. Flint. (2013) “Cross-scale modeling of surface temperature and seedling establishment to improve projections of tree distribution shifts under climate change.” Ecological Processes. 2:30 doi:10.1186/2192-1709-2-30

Holt, J. S., S. R. Welles, K. Silvera, S. M. Heredia, A. Martinez-Berdeja, K. T. Palenscar, L. C. Sweet and N. C. Ellstrand. (2013) “Taxonomic and Life History Bias in Herbicide Resistant Weeds: Implications for Deployment of Resistant Crops.” PLOS ONE. 8(9): e71916. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0071916

 Skills and Training:

  • ArcGIS 10.1, R, JMP statistical software
  • Open Science for Synthesis: Software and analytical skills training for early career researchers. Attendees selected by application. National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS), July 21-August 8, 2014
  • UC Davis Weed Science School, August 21-23, 2009
  • Learning ArcGIS Desktop (24 course hours online), ESRI, Aug 2, 2007
  • Southwestern Willow Flycatcher Survey and Monitoring Protocol, Arizona Game and Fish Department, 2006