Planting Science - Projects: 3 little piggies
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3 little piggies

Project by group dmsgrayfall2022

Explore Alfalfa seeds need to be in a certain environment to grow correctly. For example, they grow best in well-drained heavy clay soil. They should also be planted about 1cm deep to give the best results. If you live in a cooler area then its best to plant them during spring but if you live in a warmer climate then its best to plant in Fall. Alfalfa seeds don't do very well with rain because when it rains it causes them to grow mold which will kill the plant, in fact, they actually need lots of sunlight to grow. Alfalfa seeds also best grow in Sandy loam, Slit loam, or clay soil, this is because they provide the best amount of water infiltration and aeration.
Research Question How does the type of soil affect the number of leaves an alfalfa seed grows?
Predictions Our prediction is that if we plant Alfalfa seeds in potting soil, Adri, Nash's, And Ellery's dirt, then the Alfalfa seed will grow best in Adri's dirt. We believe this because Alfalfa seeds grow best in soils that have more clay and by looking at all of our dirt we decided that we think Adri's dirt contains the most clay because when we put the dirt into our planters we noticed Adri's dirt was the heaviest even though they all had the same amount of dirt.
Experimental Design Independent Variable ( What we're testing): Type of Dirt Dependent ( What we're measuring): How many leaves the plant grow The constant variables are the amount of water that we use when we water the plant, and how much light the plants get. Alfalfa seed germinates best at soil temperatures between 65-85°F. If the soil temperature is 40°F, it takes alfalfa six days to germinate, but only two days at 65°F. Materials List 1. 21 tbsp of nash’s dirt 2. 21 tbsp of Adri’s dirt 3. 21 tbsp of Ellery’s dirt 4. 21 tbsp of potting soil 5. Water 6. 36 Alfalfa seeds 7. scissors 8.12 bottles 9. Marker Procedure 1. Gather all materials. 2. Take the 12 bottles and cut off the tops so that they are tall enough to fit 7 tbsp of dirt each. 3. Write Adri on 3 of the planters and then do the same but with Nash and Ellery’s name. 4. Measure out 7 tbsp of Adri’s dirt and put it into 1 of the planters with Adri’s name, repeat this step 2 more times. 5. Measure 7 tbsp of Nash’s dirt and put it into one of the planters with Nash's name, repeat this step 2 more times. 6. Measure 7 tbsp of Ellery’s dirt and put it into one of the planters with Ellery’s name, repeat this step 2 more times. 7. Make sure to keep all the planters with Adr’s, Nash’s, and Ellery’s dirt separate. 8. Dig a small hole in all of the planters. 9. Put 3 alfalfa seed into each planter. 10. Cover the seed back up with dirt. 11. Water each of the seeds/planter with an appropriate amount of water. 12. Then leave all of the planters in a sunny spot. 13. Check on the planters every day and water when the top looks dry. While checking on the planters daily write any observations down about the plant/seed. 14. If the seeds start to sprout measure the number of leaves that it grows.
Conclusion Claim: Alfalfa seeds will grow best in potting soil and Adri's soil Evidence: In the investigation, the graph shows that Adri's soil and the potting soil both have an average of about 6 leaves which is the highest average compared to Ellerys which is 4 leaves and Nash's average is only 1 leaf which is much smaller than the potting soil and Adri's soils average. Another example that proves our claim is that in the trial 3 planters Adri's and the potting soil had 11 leaves each, but Ellery's soil only had 4 leaves, and Nash's soil it has 0 which proves our claim that Alfalfa seeds grew best in the potting soil and in Adri's soil. Reasoning: The reason that the Alfalfa seeds grew best in the potting soil and Adri's soil is most likely because of the level of nutrients. For example, potting soil is directly made for planting plants so it has nutrients like Iron, Manganese, Copper, Zinc, Boron, and Molybdenum. All of those nutrients are super helpful for growing plants. Another reason that Adri's soil grew well we think is because of the clay level. We think this because during our research before the project we read that Aflalfa seeds grow well in soils that have clay and while we were planting our seeds we observed that Adri's planters were the heaviest even though they all had the same amount of soil. so this concluded us to think Adri's soil had the most amount of clay. This investigation was a pretty fair test because we tried to minimize errors and we planted all the seeds the same. Our findings support our claim for the most part because in our prediction we thought Adri's soil would cause the alfalfa seeds the best but although that was true we didn't expect the potting soil plants to grow so well.
Investigation Theme AFW
Teacher Name Evelyn Gray
School Name DeWitt Middle School
Session Spring 2022
About this Project "This team did an overall nice job. There final storyboard showed thorough research, planning and data analysis. They were consistent in posting and communicating with their mentor!" - Evelyn Gray, Teacher

The team gave the extra mile to present make a graph and make sense of their finding. They kept a good level of communication with their mentor. The participants were very excited about agronomy and their project. - Wanderson Novais, Scientist Liaison


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NSF_Logo.jpg This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant #2010556 and #1502892. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

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