Peter is a Professor in the Department of Plant Biology and Pathology at Rutgers University and is stationed at the Marucci Blueberry and Cranberry Research and Extension Center. His program at Rutgers is divided between research (50%), extension (30%) and teaching (20%).
Peter's research program tackles problems in the biology and control of fungal diseases of blueberry and cranberry. To accomplish these goals, he utilizes tools such as remote sensing and geographic information system methodologies to detect, map, quantify and track plant pathogens as well as classical mycological methods and molecular methods to characterize pathogen populations and species. He is beginning a program to examine Landscape Plant Pathology that will investigate and develop a framework to study interacting factors such soils, topography, microclimate and water table that influence the development of disease and affect crop loss.
In extension he works with growers to develop and implement economically sound and environmentally rational crop management methods. He has published fact sheets and crop recommendations for growers. He gives regular talks at grower meetings and provides advice on crop disease management. Together with collaborators Marilyn Hughes and Jack Rabin, he has developed other crop management tools such as the PestWeb and RU-Agrotrak; pesticide database software for integrating on farm record keeping with GIS. The software utilizes handheld computers and “on the fly” database access.
Peter teaches graduate classes in Plant Pathology and Mycology and undergraduate classes in Perspectives in Agriculture and the Environment, as well as colloquium courses such as Sustainable Agriculture and Agriculture in the Pinelands.
At Cook College he serves as Rutgers University Cooperative Research and Extension Program Leader for Precision Agriculture and Natural Resources Management. He is also a member of the Graduate Program in Plant Biology where he serves on the Graduate Admissions Committee, as well as the Graduate Qualifying Exam Committee.
Peter received his training at the University of New Brunswick (BS), University of Guelph (MS) and the University of California (PhD), as well post graduate training at Duke University and the University of Kansas.