Curriculum Vitae

Associate Professor of Turfgrass Physiology


Ph.D. in Plant Biology (2006), Rutgers University
B.S. in Biology (2000), Rutgers University

Research Interests

My research program is centered on gaining greater insight into physiological mechanisms of plant adaptation to environmental stresses, using perennial grasses as an experimental system. Our goal is to identify plant traits and stress response pathways associated with tolerance to different environmental stresses that are relevant in terms of global climate change, including temperature extremes and drought.  In addition to addressing fundamental questions on mechanisms of abiotic stress resistance, we also conduct applied research to help guide turf industry professionals on the selection of stress-resistant grass species and cultivars, and to aid in the development of best management practices aimed at reduced water, fertilizer, and pesticide use.


  • STOCKSCH 275  Turfgrass Physiology and Ecology
  • STOCKSCH  397P  Introductory Plant Physiology
  • STOCKSCH 523  Plant Stress Physiology
  • STOCKSCH 391B  Turfgrass Science and Management Seminar (co-taught)
  • University of Massachusetts Winter School for Turf Managers (certificate program)

Selected Publications (2010 to present)

Hoffman, L., M. DaCosta, A. Bertrand, Y. Castonguay, and J.S. Ebdon. 2014.  Comparative assessment of metabolic responses to cold acclimation and deacclimation in annual bluegrass and creeping bentgrass. Environ. Exp. Bot.  106:197-206.

Hoffman, L., M. DaCosta, and J.S. Ebdon. 2014.  Examination of cold deacclimation sensitivity of annual bluegrass and creeping bentgrass. Crop Sci. 54:413-420.

Huang, B., M. DaCosta, and Y. Jiang. 2014.  Research advances in mechanisms of turfgrass tolerance to abiotic stresses:  From physiology to molecular biology. Crit. Rev. Plant Sci. 33:141-189.

Albertine, J.A., W.J. Manning, M. DaCosta, K.A. Stinson, M.L. Muilenberg, and C.A. Rogers. 2014.  Projected carbon dioxide to increase grass pollen and allergen exposure despite higher ozone levels. PLoS ONE 9(11): e111712. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0111712.

Sadeghpour,  A., M. Hashemi, M. DaCosta, E. Jahanzad, and S.J. Herbert. 2014.  Switchgrass establishment influenced by cover crop, tillage systems, and weed control.  Bioenerg. Res. 7:465-476.

Sadeghpour,  A., M. Hashemi, M. DaCosta, L. Gorlistsky, E. Jahanzad, and S.J. Herbert. 2014. Assessing winter cereals as cover crops for weed control in reduced-tillage switchgrass establishment. Industrial Crops and Products. 62:522-525.

Yang, Z., L. Xu, J. Yu, M. DaCosta, and B. Huang. 2013.  Changes in carbohydrate metabolism in two Kentucky bluegrass cultivars during drought stress and recovery.  J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci.  138:24-30.

Sarkar, D., P. Bhowmik, M. DaCosta, K. Shetty, and E. Watkins. 2013.  Antioxidant enzyme responses of perennial ryegrass accessions during cold acclimation.  Internat. Turfgrass Soc. Res. J. 12:419-428.

Hoffman, L., M. DaCosta, J.S. Ebdon, and J. Zhao. 2012.  Effects of drought-preconditioning on freezing tolerance of perennial ryegrass.   Environ. Exp. Bot. 79:11-20.

Lanier, J.D., J.S. Ebdon, and M. DaCosta. 2012.  Physiological changes associated with wilt induced freezing tolerance among diverse turf performance perennial ryegrass cultivars. Crop Sci.  52:1393-1405.

Espevig, T., C. Xu, T.S. Aamlid, M. DaCosta, and B. Huang. 2012.  Proteomic responses during cold acclimation in association with freezing tolerance of velvet bentgrass.  J. Amer. Soc. Hort. Sci. 137:391-399.

Espevig, T., M. DaCosta, L. Hoffman, T.S. Aamlid, A. Tronsmo, B.B. Clarke, and B. Huang. 2011.  Freezing tolerance and carbohydrate changes of two Agrostis species during cold acclimation. Crop Sci. 51:1188-1197.

Dowgiewics, J., Ebdon, S., M. DaCosta, and W. Dest. 2011.  Wear tolerance mechanisms in Agrostis species and cultivars. Crop Sci. 51: 1232-1243.

Hoffman, L., M. DaCosta, J.S. Ebdon, and E. Watkins. 2010.  Physiological changes during cold acclimation of perennial ryegrass accessions differing in freeze tolerance. Crop Sci. 50: 1037-1047.