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Gesche Blume-Werry

Ecosystem ecologist with a focus on belowground plant ecology in tundra and peatlands.

Works at

KBC-Fysiologihuset, Linnaeus väg 6, A4 36 21 Umeå universitet, 901 87 Umeå

I am an ecosystem ecologist with a passion for high latitude ecosystems and interested in the interplay of plants and their environment. My work in arctic tundra and peatlands focuses on belowground plant processes, such as root phenology and root production, and often includes measurements outside the summer season.

Some of my current projects are outlined below.



Boreal ecosystems are shaped by two major, interacting global change factors: changes in the thickness of the snow cover in winter, and grazing by large herbivores (reindeer). The EcoClimate Experiment at the Oulanka Research Station is a large, long-term experiment which includes snow addition and removal, as well as herbivore exclosures in two habitats: a dry oligotrophic Scots pine forest and a nutrient rich fen site. My goal in this project is to study how reindeer grazing and changes in snow cover influence root dynamics and I will provide non-destructive monitoring data on root dynamics (production, phenology, mortality, turnover) to be linked with other biogeochemical processes at the site. Read more.

The EcoClimate experiment owned and maintained by the Oulanka Research Station (University of Oulu) under the leadership of Riku Paavola, and I additionally collaborate with Maria Väisänen (University of Oulu).


DIG-IT! Digitalisation of Natural Complexity to Solve Socially Relevant Ecological Problems

The most important tool for observing belowground plant activity in the field are so-called minirhizotrons, transparent tubes buried in the soil and a camera to take pictures of roots over time. However, until now the amount of data that could be collected was severely constrained by the extremely time-consuming manual analysis of the resulting images. A single image from complex field settings could easily take a full day to digitize. This means that the biggest obstacle for providing data on root dynamics in high temporal and spatial resolution is the digitization of minirhizotron images. Here, we aim to automate root image analysis with Artificial Intelligence (DCNNs), thus removing the bottleneck of image analysis. Read more.

Bo Peters, Juergen Kreyling (both University of Greifswald) and I lead the subproject ‘Roots’ within the large framework of the DIG-IT! Project.

New Phytologist
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Semenchuk, Philipp; Ljung, Karin; et al.
Ecology, The Ecological Society of America 2024, Vol. 105, (2)
Jonsson, Hanna; Olofsson, Johan; Blume-Werry, Gesche; et al.
Science of the Total Environment, Elsevier 2024, Vol. 940
Piecha, Marc; Kreyling, Juergen; Couwenberg, John; et al.
New Phytologist, John Wiley & Sons 2023, Vol. 240, (2) : 502-514
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Dorrepaal, Ellen; Keuper, Frida; et al.
Biogeosciences, Copernicus Publications 2023, Vol. 20, (10) : 1979-1990
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Klaminder, Jonatan; Krab, Eveline J; et al.
Proceedings - 2023 IEEE Winter Conference on Applications of Computer Vision, WACV 2023, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 2023 : 3688-3697
Gillert, Alexander; Peters, Bo; Von Lukas, Uwe Freiherr; et al.
European Journal of Forest Research, Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2023, Vol. 142, (5) : 1197-1206
Makoto, Kobayashi; Kitagawa, Ryo; Blume-Werry, Gesche
New Phytologist, John Wiley & Sons 2023, Vol. 240, (6) : 2276-2287
Malyshev, Andrey V.; Blume-Werry, Gesche; Spiller, Ophelia; et al.
New Phytologist
Monteux, Sylvain; Blume-Werry, Gesche; Gavazov, Konstantin; et al.
Scientific Reports, Nature Publishing Group 2023, Vol. 13, (1)
Peters, Bo; Blume-Werry, Gesche; Gillert, Alexander; et al.
Ecology and Evolution, John Wiley & Sons 2023, Vol. 13, (6)
Sarneel, Judith M.; Barel, Janna M.; Duddigan, Sarah; et al.
New Phytologist, John Wiley & Sons 2023, Vol. 240, (5) : 1712-1713
Spitzer, Clydecia M.; Blume-Werry, Gesche
Nature Climate Change, Nature Publishing Group 2022, Vol. 12 : 11-12
Blume-Werry, Gesche
Journal of Applied Ecology, John Wiley & Sons 2022, Vol. 59, (8) : 2106-2116
Schwieger, Sarah; Kreyling, Juergen; Peters, Bo; et al.
Plant and Soil, Springer 2021, Vol. 465, (1-2) : 613-621
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Di Maurizio, Vanessa; Beil, Ilka; et al.
Annals of Botany, Oxford University Press 2021, Vol. 127, (3) : 337-346
Schwieger, Sarah; Blume-Werry, Gesche; Ciesiolka, Felix; et al.
Ecosystems (New York. Print), Springer 2021, Vol. 24, (5) : 1093-1109
Schwieger, Sarah; Kreyling, Juergen; Couwenberg, John; et al.
Nature Communications, Nature Publishing Group 2020, Vol. 11, (1)
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Krab, Eveline J; Olofsson, Johan; et al.
SOIL SYSTEMS, MDPI 2020, Vol. 4, (1)
Jurasinski, Gerald; Ahmad, Sate; Anadon-Rosell, Alba; et al.
Nature Geoscience, Nature Publishing Group 2020, Vol. 13, (8) : 560-565
Keuper, Frida; Wild, Birgit; Kummu, Matti; et al.
New Phytologist, John Wiley & Sons 2019, Vol. 223, (3) : 1328-1339
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Milbau, Ann; Teuber, Laurenz M.; et al.
Plant and Soil, Springer 2019, Vol. 445, (1-2) : 217-229
Schwieger, Sarah; Blume-Werry, Gesche; Peters, Bo; et al.
Journal of Vegetation Science, Vol. 29, (2) : 226-235
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Lindén, Elin; Andresen, Lisa; et al.
Journal of Ecology, John Wiley & Sons 2018, Vol. 106, (2) : 599-612
Krab, Eveline J.; Roennefarth, Jonas; Becher, Marina; et al.
The ISME Journal, Springer Nature 2018, Vol. 12, (9) : 2129-2141
Monteux, Sylvain; Weedon, James T.; Blume-Werry, Gesche; et al.
Plant and Soil, Vol. 424, (1-2) : 145-156
Schwieger, Sarah; Kreyling, Juergen; Milbau, Ann; et al.
Functional Ecology, John Wiley & Sons 2017, Vol. 31, (7) : 1493-1502
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Jansson, Roland; Milbau, Ann
Plant Ecology, Vol. 217, (11) : 1359-1367
Balogianni, Vasiliki G.; Blume-Werry, Gesche; Wilson, Scott D.
Umeå: Umeå Universitet 2016
Blume-Werry, Gesche
Journal of Ecology, Vol. 104, (6) : 1638-1648
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Kreyling, Juergen; Laudon, Hjalmar; et al.
New Phytologist, Vol. 209, (3) : 978-986
Blume-Werry, Gesche; Wilson, Scott D.; Kreyling, Juergen; et al.
Pedobiologia, Vol. 59, (5-6) : 243-251
De Long, Jonathan R.; Laudon, Hjalmar; Blume-Werry, Gesche; et al.
Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine research, Vol. 46, (4) : 859-869
Irl, Severin D. H.; Steinbauer, Manuel J.; Messinger, Jana; et al.