Planting Science - Projects: How does soil temperature affect Root Growth?
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How does soil temperature affect Root Growth?

Project by group shscasesweeneyposfall2021

Explore Plants need water and sunlight in order to survive. Global Warming is increasing every year and the impact is more visible. That being said surface temperature will only get more hot. We would like to use this experiment to see how soil temperature would affect root growth. This could predict future challenges agriculture, will have to face along with the increasing demand of food with the population increasing as well.
Research Question We are testing whether or not soil temperature affects the growth of roots of a plant. We decided to study this question because we wanted to see potential future challenges we may face due to global warming. Conducting this experiment gives us an idea of we need to do in order to slow global warming until we have solutions to these problems.
Predictions Possible outcomes given the variables are longer days waiting germination due to the increase of temperature in soil. Another possible outcome may be the roots of the plant being shorter in the plants with a hotter soil temperature. It may be possible that the less hot soil temperatures or the control will have shorter germination days and longer roots given the research prior to the experiment.
Experimental Design Supply List- Heating pad Cooling pad Lettuce seeds Soil Clear Plastic pots for soil Light Source for plants Thermometer to measure temperature Plan- We plan to set up 3 identical pots of soil with 3 lettuce seeds. Each pot will have the same amount of soil and seeds. Each plant will receive the same amount of sunlight and water. Then to introduce the variables we will place each pot on the pads and the control will remain on a room temperature surface. The control will have no heating or cooling pad underneath it, while the 2nd will have the heating pad underneath, then the 3rd with the cooling pad. To measure the root growth we would simply wet the soil and try to take the plant out of the soil and measure it on a sheet of paper and measure it with a ruler using centimeters. We would also count the number of roots from each plant. In the end we will compare the measurements from each plant to see how soil temperature affects root growth. We will also count the number of days until germination and considering the plant height above soil as well.
Conclusion Our hypothesis was inconclusive due to only one seed germinating. Which was plant #3 that was on the heating pad which implies that temperature did have an effect on root growth, There were 3 plants on the heat mat and only 1 germinated. Things that could be changed next time could be the type of seed since it was a cluster of seeds and had a seed coating also increased chances of germination.
Investigation Theme POS
Grade Level High School Students (Grades 9,10,11,12)
Teacher Name Carla Case-Sweeney
School Name Santaluces High School
Session Fall 2021


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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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