College of Agriculture & Natural Resources
Plant Science & Landscape Architecture


Walsh and Beaulieu Lab - Summer 2015


For the past few years our lab has participated in a USDA NIFA-funded SCRI project sampling commercially produced leafy greens and tomatoes.  After taking field samples, leafy greens and tomato fruit were tested for their microbial load.  Much of the 2015 field and laboratory studies were conducted by Justine Beaulieu.  In the photo above, Justine is preparing tomato samples for coliform and E. coli testing, following the protocols specified under Objective E.2 of the SCRI project. 

Justine Beaulieu was hired to continue with our food safety research, and assist in the University of Maryland - Maryland Department of Agriculture GAPs education and certification programs.  Justine comes to the lab with a strong background.  She received her MS degree in May from the University of Maryland in plant pathology, where she spent two years conducting pesticide-resistance research on Phytophthora in Maryland nurseries.  Prior to attending graduate school, Justine received a BS degree in Environmental Science and Policy from the University of Maryland, and then went on to a two-year Peace Corps assignment to Vanuatu.

Walsh and Pahl Lab - December 2010


Front Row: Donna Pahl and Julia Harshman

Back Row: Brian Murphy, Chris Walsh, Seth Denoble, Adriana Telias

Where are they now?

Donna Pahl is supported by Specialty Crop Marketing funds, working as a Faculty Assistant in the Department.  She assists fresh fruit and vegetable producers with implementing food safety plans under the Specialty Crops Marketing Grant.  This intensive outreach program blends a series of in-depth winter training sessions with on-farm assistance to farms in developing plans required by wholesalers and preparing growers for changes that will be implemented by the Food Safety Modernization Act. 

These externally funded programs have led to a series of research and educational programs to study food safety and implement programs in fresh fruit and vegetable farms in Maryland.  Much of this work is listed elsewhere in this report. 

Julia Harshman received numerous honors as a graduate student on this campus and earned her MS degree in May, 2012.  Her research tested the effects of genotype on the productivity, storability and pathogen susceptibility of commercial Rubus cultivars and numbered breeding lines.  This project has enhanced our collaboration with USDA-ARS in Beltsville as Julia took advantage of the expertise and facilities at both institutions during her MS studies. 

Julia also worked with Dr. Walsh to identify and commercialize apple trees with minimal pruning needs, stress tolerance and good fruit quality. This work led to the development of a recently-accepted manuscript on apple tree architecture and a provisional plant patent for a new apple cultivar. 

Julia left Maryland in August, 2012 to study fruit breeding and genetics with Dr. Kate Evans at Washington State University where she was recently advanced to candidacy, earned a NIFA AFRI Fellowship and was awarded short-term support for a two-month study in Queensland Australia.

Adriana Telias, postdoctoral researcher, conducted a metagenomic study of the bacteria present in the tomato phyllosphere.  Dr. Telias developed a protocol for 454 technology and submitted a manuscript to BMC Microbiology summarizing her research.  That paper was listed on the BMC Microbiology website as the most viewed during the month after it was released.  Adriana recently moved to California and is currently working as a Postharvest Researcher at a start-up company in San Francisco.

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