peypeyjames group

Project by group dmsstiemspring2019

Info

Explore Germination means to start growing, it has 3 needs water, correct temperature, and a good location. Seeds supply the food to the plant until its big enough to make its own food. Plants need external temperature, moisture, and light for it to grow. Different seeds react to different ways to a...
Research Question How does the amount of water affect the rate of germination?
Predictions If you have the 3 milliliters of water then more seeds will grow. Too much water can rot the seed before it gets to grow, and if you don´t have enough water that means the plant doesn't have enough moisture to start the germination process.
Experimental Design step 1: Set up 3 petri dishes for each water amount, with 20 seeds in each petri dish. step 2: Water all petri dishes, with the different amounts of water, once at the beginning. step 3: Wait a few days to watch the growth.
Conclusion The more amount of water you add the more of the radish seeds germinate.
Investigation Themes
Class Level

Updates

Get to know your team’s scientist mentor, who will encourage and guide you through the scientific process of discovery. The more you share your ideas and research info, the more your mentor can help. You may also hear from a scientist mentor liaison who will be helping all the teams in your class.
PlantingScience Staff
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PlantingScience Staff
said
Farewell and Best Wishes
As this research project is now in the final stages of wrapping-up, we wish to thank everyone who participated in this inquiry; the students, mentors, teachers and others behind the scenes. We appreciate all of your efforts and contributions to this online learning community.

Scientific exploration is a process of discovery that can be fun! There are many unanswered questions about plants just waiting for new scientists to consider, investigate, and share.

After the end of the session, we will be updating the platform and archiving groups and projects, after which time new updates/posts will not be able to be added to projects or groups. Please come back and visit the PlantingScience Project Gallery anytime to view this project in the future. You can search the Gallery by keyword, team name, topic, or school name.

Good bye for now.
Warm regards,
The PlantingScience team
Daniel K. Gladish
said

Thanks for sharing the results, Peypeyjames Group.  I hope you had good time with this project.

Best wishes, Dr. Dan

PlantingScience Staff
said
Looks like you are in the final stages of your projects.
It’s great to see that teams from your school are wrapping up and posting conclusions. Enjoy the final stages of your project, and feel free to post any final comments or questions you have for your mentors.
Jordan S
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Jordan S
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Jordan S
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Daniel K. Gladish
said

I would surely like to know what the results were.

Thanks, Dr. Dan

Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Peypeyjames Team:

Have you "scored" your petri dishes yet?  Do you have germination data for them?  I have to rely on you to tell me what's happening, and I'm very curious to know.

Thanks, Dr. Dan

Daniel K. Gladish
said

OK, Alanna, how about telling us which ones?  What moisture level?

Thanks, Dr. Dan

Alanna S
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some are moldy

 

Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Peypeyjames Team:

The thought occurred to me that I should ask if you know about root hairs.  They make the tips of young roots look fuzzy in much the same way mold would.  I've attached a link to a picture of a very young radish seedling.  If your seedlings look like this they are perfectly healthy.

https://faculty.uca.edu/johnc/RootHairsRadish.jpg

Cheers, Dr. Dan

Daniel K. Gladish
said

Dear Peypeyjames Team:

I think you should not add water.  If you handled all of them the same (for example, if you opened all of them to inspect them), and you have enough moisture for mold to form in some of the dishes, I think your experiment is valid.  On Monday the experiment shall have run for 1 wk, which is how long I was going to recommend you run it for radish seeds.

I was thinking about the mold, and I remembered your prediction that if there was too much water the seeds would rot.  Mold is one of the main pathogens that rots seeds. So maybe one of your predictions has been validated.

On Monday we can discuss your other results.

Dr. Dan

Daniel K. Gladish
said

Well, Team, anywhere that mold grows has plenty of moisture, and mold is an enemy of seeds.  I think you should consider its presence as one of the results, albeit an unexpected one.  I also suspect that all the dishes do not have it.  Is there a correlation between mold on the seeds and moisture level?

I will be surprised if you don't see some germination today.  Hang in there and keep checking.

Best wishes, Dr. Dan

Eric R
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A lot of our seeds have molded.  Also we didn't realize we weren't supposed to open the dishes to observe. None of our seeds have yet germinated.  We have noticed a lot of cracks on a lot of the seeds though. We put the seeds in 4 days ago.  The glass petri dishes aren't very tight fitting, So that might be a factor.

Daniel K. Gladish
said

Dear Peypeyjames Team:

Be patient.  It's probably OK, so don't add water yet; I'm investigating your question.  I know you posted pictures yesterday, but how many days has it actually been since you put the seeds in the petri dishes?  Check carefully by looking through the closed lids with a hand lens or dissection microscope.  Do any of the seeds show signs of growth, like swelling and splitting of the seedcoat or emergence of an organ?  I’ll post an answer for you a little later this afternoon.

Best wishes, Dr. Dan

Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Eric:

I am puzzled.  I did a similar experiment in my college class last semester.  The water the students added at the beginning lasted at least a week.  If you did not open the dishes, how can you tell the paper is drying out?  This is an important question, so please answer quickly.  How can you tell it's drying out?  We used plastic petri dishes; you used glass.  The lids may fit tighter on plastic dishes.  I will go check on this right now.  Have any seeds germinated yet?

Dr. Dan

Eric R
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Dear Dr. Gladish                                                                                                                                                   We were wondering if we needed to water the paper towel because they are starting to get dry? Also since the weekend is coming up we're afraid they're going to be too dry, so can we add another treatment?

Daniel K. Gladish
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Beautiful, Alanna!  You guys did a great job on the set-up.  Remember, don't open any of the dishes until the experiment is over, so the moisture levels don't change.

If possible you should inspect them every day - at the same time if possible - and write down what you see.  It would be a good idea for each moisture level to add a number or letter (ABC) to your labels so you can keep data for each dish separately over time.  You can always combine data later if you want to, but if you don't record data separately, you cannot separate it later no matter how much you might want to.

The amount of water may affect more than just the germination rate (percent of seeds that sprout).  It may also affect how long it takes to germinate, so the percent that have germinated may change over time.  I think that's interesting too.  In light of this possible time effect, and the fact that you've set up a nice range of moisture levels, consider updating your predictions so they are more specific.  These predictions are your hypotheses.  Scientists often revise a hypothesis as they think about an experiment.

Questions: What plant parts (organs) are in a seed?  What part of the seedlings do you think will grow first?  Or, do you think all parts will begin at the same time?  If only one part grows first, why would that be?  Since they are small you can use a hand lens to inspect them.  If you have a dissecting microscope, you can take pictures with a phone camera right through one of the ocular lenses.  If you decide to move the dishes to do something like that, try not to bump or tip them.

Question: If, after 3 days, all but three seeds in one of the dishes have germinated, what percent germination would that be?

This is great!  I love experimenting.

Dr. Dan

Alanna S
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Alanna S
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Alanna S
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Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Peypeyjames Team:

You should not soak seeds before placing them on the paper if what you want to know is how different amounts of water in the environment affect germination rate.  The water should come from the paper.

Dr. Dan

Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Jordan:

It is very good that you have your experimental design posted now.  Remember that it's a good idea also to include enough information so that other people can repeat your experiment.  For example, it would be helpful to others to know what the water amounts actually are, what kind of seeds they are, and how many days you plan to wait.

By the way, I forgot to mention another important reason to put a layer of paper in the bottom of each dish.  It evens out the water across the dish so that each seed has an equal chance of getting some water.

Dr. Dan

Jordan S
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Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Peypeyjames Team:

That sounds perfect.  Testing the water amount in a petri dish before you started the experiment was an excellent idea.  Hopefully you've got the seeds now; ask Ms. Stiem if you don't.  Cut a disk of paper towel (or filter paper) the same size as the inside bottom of each disk to hold the water.  It will also help keep the seeds from rolling around as much when you move the dishes.  Handle the petri dishes carefully so the seeds stay separated.

You will only need to add water once at the beginning because the petri dish lids will keep the water from evaporating away.  If you add water it will increase the amount and change the experiment.  You need one set of dishes with no water as your control set.  (Do you understand why?)  Since you predicted 3 ml would be perfect, do you predict that less water would cause fewer seeds to germinate?  You can easily set up a series with three dishes each:  0, 1, 2, and 3 ml of water.  You can also make a set with too much water:  4 ml, say.  What would you predict will happen in that set?  That will make five moisture treatment levels.

I suggest you put the paper in first.   Put the water in next, followed by the seeds.  Be sure to label each dish with the amount of water it has right then.  It is easy to get mixed up, believe me.  In fact, for the same reason, I think you should finish each set of three before starting the next moisture level.  You can stack the dishes to take up less room.  Then comes the hard part; you have to wait a few days.  Try to resist handling or opening them.  You can easily observe the top one to see if anything is happening.

Once you've got everything set up we can discuss how to "score" the dishes at the end of the experiment, that is, collect the results data.

Dr. Dan

Jordan S
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So you asked why we thought 3 ml of water is the right amount of water, so we put water into some petri dishes and when we tested 3 ml that seemed like a good amount. We believe that if you have to much water not as much seeds will grow, because there would be a lot of access water and some seeds might drown. My idea for experimental design would have 4-5 different water amounts then we'd have 3 petri dishes for each water amount. I believe my group agreed on watering every 2 days. 

We'd love to hear what you suggest for our group. 

PlantingScience Staff
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Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Jordan:

I see that you indicated that you changed the project info and the project settings.  I can see the project info section, but where is the project settings section?  I don't see that on your group page.

BTW, in the info prediction you mentioned "3 ml of water".  Why do you think 3 ml is a good amount of water?  There is nothing wrong with that, I was just curious as to why you chose that number.  If that's correct, then would other amounts result in fewer seeds germinating?  How would you design your experiment to find out?  Since you've chosen "amount of water" as your test variable, what do you think your "control treatment" should be like?

Finally, why do you think too much water would rot the seeds?  Again, I'm just curious about what you folks are thinking.  Since introducing yourselves, you've not told me much.

Cheers, Dr. Dan

Jordan S
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Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Peypeyjames Team:

While you are brainstorming questions, one that you should ask yourselves is, "Why would the amount of moisture in the environment (available water) affect the "germination rate" (the proportion of the seed population that leaves dormancy and begins growing)?"  You could work up to that by considering what a seed actually is.

Then you'll be in a position to propose a hypothesis for your experiment.  Ms. Stiem has probably already discussed this with you.  Recall that it is a statement of what you now think will happen when you eventually run the experiment.  Scientists usually start out with a question they want answered, but they turn it into a "testable assertion" (hypothesis), then test it to see if it is false or not.

Yesterday I asked you some questions about experiment design (sample size, variables, controls, etc.).  I hope you've had a chance to discuss those among yourselves.

Cheers, Dr. Dan

Jordan S
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Kristen Stiem
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Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Peypeyjames Team:

Ms. Stiem told me that you have petri dishes and pipets to measure water, but she might not have enough seeds for the plan I suggested.  I recommended that you use common globe radish seeds, which the Planting Science people did not supply.  But here's why I recommend them:  1) Under good conditions most of the seeds will germinate.  2) At room temperature they germinate all at about the same time, about 3 days after receiving water.  3) They are small enough to fit a bunch of them (say 20) in a petri dish but not so small they are hard to handle.  4) They are cheap and easy to get.

So, why do you think I suggested you use a fairly large number of seeds and have several (3) petri dishes for each moisture level?  And why do you need to have a "control treatment"?  If you are going to test how moisture level affects germination, what should your control moisture level be?  Remember that in a good experiment all the variables (conditions) each group of seeds experiences should be the same except the variable being tested, which is moisture level in this case.  What is a "variable" anyway?

Speaking of which, besides the control level, what should the other moisture levels (the "treatment levels") be?  That's something we need to decide in advance of starting the experiment.  I have recent experience with this, so I have an idea of what they should be, but I'd like to know your ideas first.

Best wishes, Dr. Dan

Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Eric, Alanna, Jordan, and Peyton (aka Peypeyjames Team):

OK, let's get started.  I sent some suggestions to Ms. Stiem last night for several different germination influences you could investigate; she may have mentioned it to you.  The easiest (and clearest) way to find out something like the moisture requirement for germination is to use a simple soilless system that can readily be standardized for all the moisture-level treatments.  I take it you are not planning to go beyond the germination stage, so soil will not be needed.  (Besides, it will make observations harder, and it's messy.)

Plant researchers often use petri dishes for small-scale experiments like this.  Do you have empty petri dishes with lids at your school?  Glass or plastic is OK.  9 or 10cm x 1.5cm is a good size.  You should have three dishes for each treatment (n = 3 each, we'll discuss this later).  Depending on how many moisture levels you want to test (four or five?), you'd need 12-15 dishes the same size.  You can cut filter paper or paper towel disks to fit inside the dishes (I recommend two disks in each).  If you do that, and put exactly the same number of identical seeds in each dish, you'll have identical environments for every seed.  Think about why that would be important.  Let me know what you think.  Then, if each group of three dishes gets precisely the same amount of water in each dish, can you see why that should give clear reproducible results?

I'm going to pause here to let you check on petri dishes because that's an important part of my suggested experiment design.  If your school doesn't have those, maybe there are some at your high school.  I'll check back a little later today.

Cheers, Dr. Dan

Eric R
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Hi this is Eric posting for my whole group. we are brainstorming questions for our investigation and we are thinking of the question "How does the amount of water affect the rate of germination"we would appreciate any feedback you have for us 

Daniel K. Gladish
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Dear Peypey James Group:

I'm Dr. Dan Gladish.  I'm a botany professor at Miami University.  I seem to have the pleasure of serving as your mentor on your project.  What my students and I study in my lab is how environmental stresses affect the way roots grow and how they compensate when they get too much water or are too hot.  I think these are questions that will be important for us to understand because global warming doesn't just affect soil temperature but also makes weather extremes more likely.  It is really changing things in natural and farm environments

Besides torturing root systems to see what happens, I also like to play bass guitar with my friends in a local band and ride my motorcycle in the SW Ohio hills.  When the weather is right I like to garden (its feels relaxing and creatively magical).  I don't watch much TV unless it is science on PBS, which is what I read about most of the time.  But that is what I need to do to stay up with things in my job.  I suppose it is fair to say I'm a science geek, but that means I can help you design your experiments so you'll get meaningful results if you'll explain what you want to do right away.

One thing to keep in mind is that the simpler you make an experiment the easier it is to figure out what's going on and what the results are.

Cheers, Dr. Dan

 

Daniel K. Gladish
joined the project