Dr David Pilbeam


I came to the University of Leeds as a Research Demonstrator in the then Department of Plant Sciences in 1977, after completing a PhD on the Chemotaxonomy of the genus Crotalaria at Kings College, London University.  I was appointed as Lecturer in Agricultural Chemistry in 1979, and as Senior Lecturer in Applied Biology in 1993.  I retired from the University in 2011, when I was appointed as a Visiting Research Fellow.

Research interests

My research has focussed on the mineral nutrition of plants.  I have specialised on the physiology of assimilation of nitrogen by plants, although I have also worked on the acquisition and uptake of other elements. 


In recent years I have been involved with long-term field experiments on agroforestry at the University of Leeds Farm, and I am still active in maintaining and monitoring these experiments.

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://biologicalsciences.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • BSc, Botany/Zoolog, Kings College London University
  • PhD, Kings College London University

Professional memberships

  • Editorial Board of the Journal of Plant Nutrition
  • Member of the Committee of the UK Farm Woodland Forum

Student education

Prior to my retirement I taught courses on plant physiology, plant/soil relations and crop physiology.