How does city life impact the evolution of plants?

I am exploring this question as a PhD candidate in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Toronto. My advisors are Drs. Marc Johnson and Helene Wagner.

My research focuses on how urbanization, or the development of cities, influences the evolution of common milkweed (a favorite of Monarchs). More and more people are moving to cities- currently half the human population lives in urban areas- and by understanding how these unique environments affect wildlife on the long term, we can design resilient cities that act as healthy ecosystems for wildlife as well as people.


Before graduate school, I earned my B.A. in Biology with a Certificate in Integrative Genomics Sciences from Wesleyan University. After completing my B.A., I spent two years working at an ecological restoration firm.

In my free time I like to go to concerts, explore Toronto, gawk at dogs, and contemplate the wonders of evolutionary resilience. Find me on TwitterLinkedIn, or send me an email to learn more!