Professor Susanne Schmidt

Professor

School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
Faculty of Science

Affiliated Professor

Centre for Plant Science
Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation
susanne.schmidt@uq.edu.au
+61 7 336 51050
0408 707 984

Overview

How plants work in nature and in bioproduction systems. Dr Schmidt leads a vibrant research group with focus on natural ecosystems and agro-ecosystems at the interface of plants, microbes and soil. Current research projects include:

  • Plant Improvement: "SaveN Cane - Developing selection tools for N efficient cane”. This projects involves field and laboratory evaluation of sugarcane germplasm to identify traits that improve nitrogen use as currently only 50% or less of nitrogen fertiliser is used by crops. The project aims to reduce the need for nitrogen fertiliser, minimise nutrient pollution and assist plant breeding.
  • Low greenhouse gas footprint agriculture: “Advancing Livestock Waste as Low Emission-High Efficiency Fertilizers” (led by Dr Matt Redding DAFF QLD), and "Developing sugarcane-legume companion cropping systems to minimise N2O emissions". Both projects develop alternative nutrient supply strategies to minimise greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture and to benefits plants via biofortification and nutrient mobilisation
  • Alternative nutrient supply systems: "Towards sustainable bioproduction systems: harnessing organic nitrogen for plant growth". There is now much evidence that plants do not only rely on inorganic compounds as sources of essential nutrients but also acquire larger organic compounds. This broadens the range of nutrient supply and provides scientific validation to innovate nutrient supply in bioproduction.
  • Microbiology in sugarcane systems: "Harnessing Soil Biology" and "Microbiome of Sugarcane Soils" (led by Profs Mark Ragan IMB, Phil Hugenholtz UQ ACE)". These projects examine microbes in soil and associated with sugarcane to assess how microbial communities influence biogeochemical cycles including greenhouse gas emissions and carbon sequestration. We aim to find way of manipulating microbial communities to enhance crop health and environmental sustainability.
  • Climate change adaptation: “Rainforest Biodiversity & Climate Change” south-east QLD Climate Adaptation Research Initiative; "Functional responses of Triodia in the spinifex grasslands of arid Australia". These and other projects examine the responses of plants to environmental conditions to better understand how increases in temperature and decreases in water availability impact on plants and ecosystems.

Research Impacts

Our research

- helps to advance nutreint supply systems to reduce pollution by matching soil and crop needs, and informs crop breeding.

- supports solutions to improve soils that have been degraded by agricultural land use including sequestering carbon for carbon credits.

- supports tree planting initiatives in riparian zones (along rivers) to improve the quality of drinking water reservoirs by reducing soil and nutrient run-off.

- helps to make conservation decisions for biodiverity preservation

- supports the sustainable use of native plants for novel uses

Qualifications

  • Master of Science, Universität Hohenheim
  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland

Publications

View all Publications

Publications

Book Chapter

  • Paungfoo-Lonhienne, Chanyarat, Schmidt, Susanne, Webb, Richard I. and Lonhienne, Thierry G. A. (2013). Rhizophagy-a new dimension of plant-microbe interactions. In Frans J. de Bruijn (Ed.), Molecular Microbial Ecology of the Rhizosphere (pp. 1199-1207) Hoboken, NJ United States: Wiley-Blackwell. doi:10.1002/9781118297674.ch115

  • Ellis, J. C., Bellingham, P. J., Cameron, E. K., Croll, D. A., Kolb, G. S., Kueffer, C., Mittelhauser, G. H., Schmidt, S., Vidal, E. and Wait, D. A. (2011). Effects of seabirds on plant communities. In Christa Mulder, Wendy Anderson, David Towns and Peter Bellingham (Ed.), Seabird Islands: Ecology, invasion and restoration (pp. 177-211) New York, USA: Oxford Univ Press.

  • Mulder, C. P. H., Jones, H., Kameda, K., Palmborg, C., Schmidt, S., Ellis, J., Orrock, J. L., Wait, A., Wardle, D. A., Yang, L., Young, H., Croll, D. and Vidal, E. (2011). Impacts of seabirds on plant and soil properties. In Christa P. H. Mulder, Wendy B. Anderson, David R. Towns and Peter J. Bellingham (Ed.), Seabird Islands: Ecology, invasion and restoration (pp. 135-176) New York, USA: Oxford University Press.

  • Stewart, G. and Schmidt, S. (1999). Evolution and ecology of plant mineral nutrition. In Malcolm C. Press, Julie D. Scholes and Martin G. Barker (Ed.), Physiological plant ecology: The 39th Symposium of the British Ecological Society, held at the University of York, 7-9 September 1998 (pp. 91-114) UK: Blackwell Science.

Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Brackin, Richard, Robinson, Nicole, Lakshmanan, Prakash and Schmidt, Susanne (2012). Microbial dynamics in forest and sugarcane soils of Queensland. In: Lucy Burkitt and Leigh Sparrow, Proceedings of the 5th Joint Australian and New Zealand Soil Science Conference 2012. Soil Science: Joint Australian and New Zealand Soil Science Conference: Soil solutions for diverse landscapes, Hobart, Australia, (392-392). 2-7 December 2012.

  • Guterres, J., Rossato, L., Pudmenzky, A., Doley, D., Whittaker, M. and Schmidt, S. (2012). Micron-sized metal-binding hydrogel particles improve germination and radicle elongation of Australian metallophyte grasses in mine waste rock and tailings. In: Andy Fourie and Mark Tibbett, Mine Closure 2012: Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Mine Closure. Seventh International Conference on Mine Closure, Brisbane, Australia, (517-532). 25-27 September 2012.

  • Bigot, M., Guterres, J., Rossato, L., Pudmenzky, A., Doley, D., Whittaker, M., Pillai-McGarry, U. and Schmidt, S. (2012). Novel metal-binding hydrogel particles alleviate soil toxicity and facilitate healthy plant establishment of the native metallophyte grass Astrebla lappacea in mine waste rock and tailings. In: Andy Fourie and Mark Tibbett, Mine Closure 2012: Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Mine Closure. Seventh International Conference on Mine Closure, Brisbane, Australia, (533-550). 25-27 September 2012.

  • Guterres, Jaquelina, Rossato, Laurence, Pudmenzky, Alex, Doley, David, Whittaker, Michael and Schmidt, Susanne (2011). Micron-sized metal-binding hydrogel particles improve germination and root elongation of Australian metallophyte grasses (Astrebla lappacea and Austrostipa scabra) on highly polluted waste rock and tailings. In: 32nd Australasian Polymer Symposium, Coffs Harbour, NSW, Australia, (). 13-16 February 2011.

  • Gamage, H., De Silva, S., Flutter, N., O'Rourke, T., Memmott, P., Martin, D. and Schmidt, S. (2010). Green building materials from spinifex. In: The International Forestry Review. Forests for the Future: Sustaining Society and the Environment. XXIII IUFRO World Congress, Seoul, Republic of Korea, (279-279). 23-28 August, 2010.

  • Robinson, N., Gamage, H. K., Whan, A., Vinall, K., Fletcher, A., Brackin, R. T., Holst, J., Lakshmanan, P. and Schmidt, Susanne (2009). Evidence of differences in nitrogen use efficiency in sugarcane genotypes. In: P. Tait and B. R. Stanmore, Proceedings of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologists. Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologists, Ballina, NSW, Australia, (256-264). 6-8 May 2009.

  • Rossato, L., Pudmenzky, A., Doley, D., Monteiro, M., Whittaker, M., Schmidt, S., MacFarlane, J. and Baker, A. J. M. (2009). Metal-binding particles enhance germination and radicle tolerance index of the metallophyte grass Astrebia lappacea Lindl. under phytotoxic lead and zinc condition. In: Mine Closure 2009: Proceedings of the Fourth International Seminar on Mine Closure. Mine Closure 2009: Fourth International Seminar on Mine Closure, Perth, WA, Australia, (301-309). 9-11 September 2009.

  • Clech-Goods, C., Schooler, S., Lovelock, C. and Schmidt, S. (2008). Does plant response to the limiting resource explain invasibility? An experimental test using two invasive weeds and their non-invasive native congeners. In: van Klinken, R. D., Osten, V. A., Panetta, F. D. and Scanlan, J. C., Proceedings of the 16th Australian Weeds Conference. 16th Australian Weeds Conference, Cairns, Australia, (107-107). 18-22 May.

  • McGrath, K., Brackin, R.T., Lakshmanan, P., Schenk, P.M.P. and Schmidt, S. (2008). Knowledge of soil biology to reduce nitrogen loss as N2O from sugarcane farming. In: Bruce, R.C., Proceedings of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologies. Conference of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologies, Townsville, Australia, (115-126). 29 April - 2 May 2008.

  • Allen, D., Kingston, G., Rennenberg, H., Dalal, R. and Schmidt, S. (2008). Nitrous oxide emissions from sugarcane soils as influenced by waterlogging adn split N fertiliser applications.. In: Bruce, R.C., Proceedings of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologies. Conference of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologies, Townsville, Australia, (95-104). 29 April - 2 May 2008.

  • Robinson, N., Fletcher, A.T., Whan, A., Vinall, K., Brackin, R.T., Lakshmanan, P. and Schmidt, S. (2008). Sustainable sugarcane production systems: reducing plant nitrogen demand. In: Bruce, R.C., Proceedings of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologies. Conference of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologies, Townsville, Australia, (212-219). 29 April - 2 May 2008.

  • Gamage, Harshi K., Prentis, Peter, Lowe, Andrew J., Lamont, Malcolm and Schmidt, Susanne (2006). Genetic and Physiological traits of diploid progenitors and newly synthesized polyploidy trees. In: Proceedings of: IUFRO Division 2 Joint Conference: Low input breeding and genetic conservation of forest tree species. IUFRO Division 2 Joint Conference: Low input breeding and genetic conservation of forest tree species, Antalya, Turkey, (). 9-13 October 2006.

  • Richards, A., Shapcott, A., Playford, J., Critchley, C. and Schmidt, S. (2001). Why are some plants rare?. In: R. A. Hindmarsh, Situating the Environment at the University of Queensland. Situating the Environment 2001, The University of Queensland, (91-104). 15-16 February, 2001.

  • Mason, M., Downey, M., Ealing, P. M., Von Wiren, N., Critchley, C., Schmidt, S. and Stewart, G. (2000). Efficient nutrient acquisition by Australian native plants. In: Combined Conference Abstracts: 44th Annual ASBMB, 40th Annual ASPP, Annual NZSBMB, 22nd Annual NZSPP. Com Bio 2000, Wellington, NZ, (). 11-14 Dec, 2000.

  • Collier, C., Dennison, W. C. and Schmidt, S. (1999). Internal nitrogen cycling in seagrass: Patterns and process. In: Combined Conference Abstracts: 43rd Annual ASBMB, 18th Annual ANZSCDB and 39th Annual ASPP. Combio 99, Conrad Jupiters, Gold Coast, (Sym-51-05). 27-30 Sept 99.

  • Schmidt, S., Stewart, G., Golding, S. D. and Sullivan, C. (1999). Novel biomonitoring techniques for evaluating the sustainability of mine site revegetation. In: Australian Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Australian and New Zealand Society for Cell & Developmental Biology and Australian Society of Plant Physiologists. Combio 99, Conrad Jupiters, Gold Coast, (). 27-30 September, 1999.

  • Erskine, P. D., Bergstrom, D., Schmidt, S., Stewart, G., Tweedie, C. and Shaw, J. D. (1999). Royal fertilizer at the polar front. In: Plant Response to climate change: Integration of ITEX discoveries. 9th ITEX Meeting, Marriott Hotel, East Lansing, MI, (35-35). January 5 - 7, 1999.

  • Harwood, M. R., Grigg, A. H., Schmidt, S., Mulligan, D. R., Bellairs, S. M. and Foot, P. (1999). Vegetation, nutrients, water and fire: ecosystem development following heavy mineral sands mining on north Stradbroke Island. In: Proceedings of the Minerals Council of Australia 24th Annual Environmental Workshop. Mining into the next century: environmental opportunities ans, Townsville, Queensland, (430-446). 10th - 15th October,1999.

  • Turnbull, M. H., Schmidt, S., Erskine, P. D., Richards, S. and Stewart, G. R. (1996). Root adaptation and nitrogen source acquisition in natural ecosystems. In: International Symposium on Dynamics of Physiological Processes in Woody Roots, Ithaca, NY, United States, (941-948). 8-11 October 1995.

  • Handley, L. L., Brendel, O., Scrimgeour, C. M., Schmidt, S., Raven, J. A., Turnbull, M. H. and Stewart, G. R. (1996). The 15N natural abundance patterns of field-collected fungi from three kinds of ecosystems. In: 2nd Stable Isotope Mass Spectrometry Users Group (SIMSUG) Meeting, Bangor, Wales, (974-978). 10-12 January 1996. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1097-0231(19960610)10:8<974::AID-RCM533>3.0.CO;2-Z

Other Outputs

  • Rossato, Laurence Suzanne Rosa, Pudmenzky, Alexander, Doley, David, Monteiro, Michael, Whittaker, Michael and Schmidt, Susanne (2008). Soil remediation process. 20110182670.

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Master Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision