Planting Science - Projects: Four Fantastic Ferns
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Four Fantastic Ferns

Project by group dmsstiemspring2022

Explore We know that plants drop seeds so that even more seeds can grow. Plants are made up of many different cells or are single-celled. All plants do photosynthesis or cellular respiration to make energy and food for itself. Seeds rely on the food supply inside the seed to grow and mature. A Plants seed is mostly made up of this food. All plants need sunlight to grow and make ATP energy. Germination means to start growing and to do that the seed needs more ATP energy then when it becomes a full grown plant. Germination can only happen if it has a good location, the right amount of water, and the right amount of sunlight. Plants can become dormant, which basiccly means the plant is sleeping or not using energy. Some seeds can be dormant for hundreds of years before they start germinating. This could be because a plants genetic makeup infulinces when it germinates, repruduces, and grows. Plants have 2 differnet organ systems: the root system and the shoot system. Almost all insect pollenated flowers have colored petals to atract insects.
Research Question How does the type of fertilizer a seed is given, affect the height of a plant's stem?
Predictions I think that the plant will grow at a faster germination rate if it is given organic fertilizer. I think this because the organic fertilizer contains what the plant would receive in the wild and is not changed with artificial ingredients. Inorganic fertilizer contains artificial ingredients. Therefore, the inorganic fertilizer is worse for the plant's germination rate.
Experimental Design Variables: Independent Variable = What type (if any) fertilizer. Dependent Variable = How tall the plant is each day. Variables to Control = Type of seed, amount of water, type of container, temperature, and the amount of light, how many seeds are in a container. Materials: 8 petri dishes, 8 pieces of paper towel, 5 mm of water (for each petri dish), 40 Pearl Millet seeds, Organic Fertilizer, Inorganic Fertilizer Procedure: Step 1: Put eight wet pieces of paper towel in eight petri dishes. Step 2: Place five Pearl Millet seeds in each petri dish. Step 3: Measure out the correct amount of fertilizer for all six of the containers. Step 4: Pour the organic fertilizer into two dishes. Step 5: Pour the inorganic fertilizer into two petri dishes. Step 6: Next pour half of the amounts of each type of fertilizer into two petri dishes. Step 7: Leave the leftover two petri dishes empty of fertilizer. Step 8: Measure the height of each stem (in cm) each day for the weekdays.
Conclusion Claim: If you put seeds in inorganic fertilizer, it will grow faster than organic, both, and none. Evidence: After 5 days of growing, the seeds put in organic fertilizer grew an average height of 18 mm. The seeds put in Inorganic fertilizer grew to an average height of 35.9 mm. Seeds placed in both types of fertilizers grew an average height of 22 mm. Finally, seeds that grew in no fertilizer grew to an average height of 23.9 mm. As you can see, the seeds that had to grow in inorganic fertilizer grew the most in 5 days. Reasoning: The inorganic fertilizer worked the best in our investigation because of the ingredients used. The ingredients in inorganic fertilizer include mitocronutrients, potassium, sulfur, and chemicals in order to give the plants the nutrition it needs. These chemicals do not need to be broken down in the soil or with in the plant making it easier for the chemicals to do their job quicker for the plant. In organic fertilizer there are many things that need to be broken down within the soil. Because we did not use soil, these things took even longer than they would with soil. Organic fertilizer is also proven to take longer than inorganic fertilizer. This is because of the ingredients that have to be broken down which include, shells, wood, potassium, which did not need to be broken down in inorgsnic fertilizer, this could be the reason the plant had some growth, and sulfur. The experiment could have had more measurements. We did not have a exact amount of fertilizer to give or plant so we had to give the plants a estimated amount. This information does not match with our previous prediction but matches with our current claim. Evaluation: Organic fertilizer grew slower than anything else. We are strongly confident because we conducted 10 trials, had few or little errors, and used scientific concepts, principles, or theories. Why did no fertilizer grow faster than organic fertilizer? Why did both types of fertilizer not grow very well?
Investigation Theme WOS
Teacher Name Kristen Stiem
School Name DeWitt Middle School
Session Spring 2022
About this Project

I believe this group did a great job overall! They adjusted their investigation plan based on feedback, they used information from their own research and mentor feedback to make sense of their findings, and they were persistent in communication even when their mentor was initially not very responsive. They kept a positive attitude the whole time, even when their experiment gave them surprising results.
-- Kristen Stiem, Teacher


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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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