Eric Bishop von Wettberg

A great many crops are deficient in genetic diversity as a result of extreme population bottlenecks resulting from domestication and breeding. This limits their capacity for adaptation to new or altered habitats and their resilience in the face of climate change. My laboratory studies the consequences of population bottlenecks for adaptation to harsh environments, merging approaches from genomics and evolutionary ecology. We also study ways in which genetics changes to crops or alterations to cropping systems can increase the amount of carbon sequestered in agricultural soils. We aim to develop a thorough understanding of the evolutionary ecology and population genetics of wild relatives of crops to breed better crops, conserve crop genetic resources, and build resilence to climate change into agricultural systems. We primarily work on legumes, with a focus on chickpea, lentils, fenugreek, fava bean and forages. We also work on grass-based production systems in Vermont.


Associations and Affiliations

Gund Institute For the Environment Fellow 

Secretary and Scientific Executive Committee, International Legume Society 

Editorial Board, Plants People Planet 

Associate Editor, The Plant Genome

Eric Bishop von Wettberg

Areas of Expertise and/or Research

Genetics, Genomics, Domestication, Crop Breeding, Evolution, Ecology, Legumes, Germplasm, Conservation


  • Ph.D. Ecology and Evolution, Brown University, Providence RI, 2007
  • B.A. Biology, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore PA, 1999


  • (802) 656-9117
Office Location:

211 Jeffords

Office Hours:

By appointment

  1. The von Wettberg Lab
  2. Linked In
  3. Twitter @evonwetto

Courses Taught

  • BCOR 011 Exploring Biology
  • PSS 172     Crop Breeding
  • PSS 134     Agro-terrorism and Bio-piracy
  • HCOL 185 Crop Domestication
  • PSS 296     Hydroponics
  • FS 340       Food Systems Science and Policy