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Kimberlyn Williams

Kimberlyn Williams



Office Phone(909) 537-7656
Office LocationBI-311


B.S., University of California, Davis

Ph.D., Stanford University


BIOL 3520 - Local Flora

BIOL 3540 - Plant Biology and Diversity

BIOL 4580 - Medical and Economic Botany

Plants of CSUSB

Research and Teaching Interests

Research in my lab focuses on plant water relations, carbon allocation in plants, and mechanisms of vegetation change. Studies of vegetation change have included investigations of effects of sea-level rise on coastal forest change on the Gulf of Mexico and investigations of effects of El Niño on shrub invasion into grassland in California. These studies focus on the physiological and ecological characteristics of seedlings that determine patterns of vegetation change. Other research in my lab focuses on traits that affect a plant's ability to cope with water stress and on the importance of carbohydrate stores for seedlings facing periodic stresses such as periodic salt stress, fire, and defoliation.

Representative publications

McKenzie, Z., Kumler, M.P., Ma, R., Williams, K. and Hayes, W.K., 2023. Eyes from the sky: Application of satellite-based indices to assess vegetation casualty on Grand Bahama Island one year post-Hurricane Dorian. Remote Sensing Applications: Society and Environment, 32, p. 101044.
Williams, K., E. Burck, and C.L. Garcia. 2021.   Causes and correlates of interannual variation in flowering of Calochortus plummerae (Liliaceae). Madroño 68(4): 360-365. (
Yost, Jenn M., et al. 2020. The California Phenology Collections Network: using digital images to investigate phenological change in a biodiversity hotspot. Madroño 66(4): 130-141.

Fagherazzi, S., S.C. Anisfeld, L.K. Blum, E.V. Long, R.A. Feagin, A. Fernandes, W.S. Kearney, and K. Williams. 2019. Sea level rise and the dynamics of the marsh-upland boundary. Frontiers in environmental science 7): 25. (

Allen, E. B., K. Williams, J.L. Beyers, M. Phillip, S. Ma, & C.M. D’Antonio. 2018. Chaparral restoration. Chapter 13 in , E.C.Underwood, H.D.Safford, N.A. Molinari, and J.E. Keeley, eds. Valuing Chaparral, pp. 347-384, Springer, Cham.

Callaway, R.M., D. Montesinos, K. Williams, and J.L. Maron. 2013. Native congeners provide biotic resistance to invasive Potentilla through soil biota. Ecology 94(6): 1223-1229.

Long, R.L., K. Williams, E.M. Griffiths, G.R. Flematti, D.J. Merritt, J.C. Stevens, S.R. Turner, S.B. Powles, and K.W. Dixon. 2010. Prior hydration of Brassica tournefortii seeds reduces the stimulatory effect of karrikinolide on germination and increases seed sensitivity to abscisic acid. Annals of Botany 105(6): 1063-1070.

DeSantis, L.R.G., S. Bhotika, K. Williams, and F.E. Putz. 2007. Sea-level rise and drought interactions accelerate forest decline on the Gulf Coast of Florida, USA. Global Change Biology 13(11): 2349-2360.

Williams, K., M. MacDonald, K. McPherson, and T. H. Mirti. 2007. Ecology of the coastal edge of hydric hammocks on the Gulf Coast of Florida. Chapter 10 in W.H. Conner, T. W. Doyle, and K. W. Krauss, eds. Ecology of Tidal Freshwater Swamps of the Southeastern United States, pp. 255-289. Springer Press.

Williams, K., D. Coffey, Y. Osorio, K. Maher, A. Meyer, K. Myers, H. Contreras, and K. VinZant. 2006. Habitat correlates of Calochortus plummerae, a rare mariposa lily, on the campus of California State University, San Bernardino. Crossosoma 32(2): 75-82.

Williams, K., L.J. Westrick, and B.J. Williams. 2006. Effects of blackberry (Rubus discolor) invasion on oak population dynamics in a California savanna. Forest Ecology and Management 228: 187-196.

Williams, K., M. MacDonald, and L.S.L. Sternberg. 2003. Interactions of storm, drought, and sea-level rise on coastal forest: a case study. Journal of Coastal Research 19(4): 1116-1121.

Williams, K., K.C. Ewel, R.P. Stumpf, F.E. Putz, and T.W. Workman. 1999. Sea-level rise and coastal forest retreat on the west coast of Florida, USA. Ecology 80: 2045-2063.

McPherson, K. and K. Williams. 1998. The role of carbohydrate reserves in the growth, resilience, and persistence of cabbage palm seedlings (Sabal palmetto). Oecologia 117: 460-468.

Williams, K., M.V. Meads, and D.A. Sauerbrey. 1998. The roles of seedling salt-tolerance and resprouting in forest zonation on the west coast of Florida, USA. American Journal of Botany 85(12): 1745-1752.

McPherson, K. and K. Williams. 1998. Fire resistance of cabbage palms (Sabal palmetto) in the southeastern USA. Forest Ecology and Management 109: 197-207.

McPherson, K. and K. Williams. 1996. Establishment growth in Sabal palmetto. American Journal of Botany 83: 1566-1570.

Perry, L. and K. Williams. 1996. Effects of salinity and flooding on seedlings of cabbage palm (Sabal palmetto). Oecologia 105: 428-434.

Williams, K., M.M. Caldwell and J.H. Richards. 1993. The influence of shade and clouds on soil water potential: the buffered behavior of hydraulic lift. Plant and Soil 157: 83-95.

Peng, S., D.M. Eissenstat, J.H. Graham, K. Williams and N.C. Hodge. 1993. Growth depression in mycorrhizal citrus at high-phosphorus supply. Analysis of carbon costs. Plant Physiology 101: 1063-1071.

Williams, K., S.D. Davis, B.L. Gartner and S. Karlsson. 1991. Factors limiting the establishment of a chaparral oak, Quercus durata Jeps., in grassland. In R. B. Standiford (tech. coord.), Proceedings of the Symposium on Oak Woodlands and Hardwood Rangeland Management; October 31-November 2, 1990; Davis, California, pp. 70-73. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-126. Berkeley, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Chiariello, N.R., K. Williams and H.A. Mooney. 1989. Growth, carbon allocation, and cost of plant tissues. In R.W. Pearcy, J. Ehleringer, H.A. Mooney and P.W. Rundel (eds.) Physiological Plant Ecology: Field Methods and Instrumentation, pp. 327-366. Chapman and Hall, New York.

Williams, K., C.B. Field and H.A. Mooney. 1989. Relationships among leaf construction cost, leaf longevity, and light environment in rainforest plants of the genus Piper. American Naturalist 133: 198-211.

Williams, K. and R.J. Hobbs. 1989. Control of shrub establishment by springtime soil water availability in an annual grassland. Oecologia 81: 62-66.

Armstrong, J., K. Williams, L.F. Huenneke, and H.A. Mooney. 1988. Topographic position effects on growth depression of California Sierra Nevada pines during the 1982-83 El Niño. Arctic and Alpine Research 20: 352-357.

Williams, K., R.J. Hobbs and S.P. Hamburg. 1987. Invasion of an annual grassland in Northern California by Baccharis pilularis ssp. consanguinea. Oecologia (Berl.) 72: 461-465.

Williams, K., F. Percival, J. Merino and H.A. Mooney. 1987. Estimation of tissue construction cost from heat of combustion and organic nitrogen content. Plant Cell and Environment 10: 725-734.