MSU CARC hires new soil microbiologist

The Montana State University Central Agricultural Research Center located in Moccasin, has recently hired a new soil microbiologist and agronomist who will lead a research program on dryland agriculture practices and soil health for Central Montana. Jed Eberly, assistant professor of agronomy and soil microbiology at CARC, is expected to begin in March.

“I’m looking forward to joining the Central Agricultural Research Center and the greater Montana State University community,” Eberly said. “There’s a strong relationship between the statewide centers and MSU’s central Bozeman campus with Montana’s larger agricultural community. I’m looking forward to becoming a part of this network and working with colleagues and producers to elevate applied research in soil health.”

Eberly will work closely with CARC faculty and staff under CARC Superintendent and Cropping Systems Agronomist Patrick Carr, who took over management of CARC in July following the retirement of former CARC Superintendent David Wichman.

Carr said he is excited about the addition of Eberly to MSU, as new products are being developed for commercial agriculture in relation to soil health, and it’s becoming more and more important that MSU is involved in the evaluation of existing, new and potential products for Montana producers. Carr said Eberly will help CARC expand its research focus on diversifying wheat-based cropping systems to what occurs below the soil surface, enabling MSU to better fulfill its mission of solving problems faced by Montana farmers in Montana.

“In many ways, welcoming Dr. Eberly to CARC as a soil microbiologist reflects the cutting-edge of soil science in agriculture today,” Carr said. “Understanding soil microbes and the components of healthy soils is an increasingly important research area, and we’re confident Dr. Eberly will bring a robust program to CARC given his impressive depth of experience and training.”

Eberly completed his Ph.D. in biological and ecological engineering at Oregon State University and has a bachelor’s degree in biology from MSU Billings. Eberly’s recent research experience includes five years of diverse bioremediation research in addition to work in harmful algal blooms and synthetic biology for the United States Army Corps of Engineers. His published research includes work in bioremediation, assessing microbial communities in soil microcosms and microbial biodiesel production. Additionally, Eberly has experience engineering biological signaling networks and microbial biosensors for the detection of environmental contaminants and in biological hydrogen production. He has also conducted research on microorganisms living in hot springs in Yellowstone National Park. 

He can be reached at


About CARC

Founded in 1921, for more than 100 years CARC has conducted research on crops including cereals, oilseeds, pulses and forage crops. CARC acreage consists of 600 acres, many of which are dedicated fields for variety trials and the production of foundation seed of crop varieties developed and released by the Montana Agricultural Experiment Station. A local advisory board made up of area producers and industry representatives from surrounding counties provides guidance on CARC research priorities.  

CARC is one of seven research centers located strategically across the state, along with the Arthur H. Post farm in Bozeman, to address the diverse climatological challenges of Montana’s agriculture and natural resource economies. This concentrated research center network, in addition to the Bozeman campus hosting MSU, constitutes the MAES, the applied research department within the MSU College of Agriculture. MAES houses the on-the-ground agricultural research profile for Montana agriculture in animal health, food safety, agricultural economics, plant sciences, natural resources and pest management.



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