Elongata

Project by group vfjshweissfall2018


Info

Explore Plants use carbon dioxide to make oxygen for us humans to breathe, they use water and sunlight to do the process called photosynthesis, and they gather the nutrients they need through their roots planted in the soil. Plants need certain levels of pH to survive, and they require certain macro and...
Research Question How much water can our soil/sand mixture retain? If we add the same amount of water to both mixtures, how will the soil moisture differentiate? We know that sand retains more water, than the normal soil, so if we add the same amount of water, our 20/20/20 mixture being our control group, we will...
Predictions The possible outcomes of the study would include possible growth declination, dry soil, more time for petals or leaves to grow, and we would see weak plants in the sand/soil mixture and healthy plants in the 20/20/20 mixture. The sand holds more moisture, however, it takes more water to keep the...
Experimental Design The plan for our experiment would be to add the amount of water needed to the 20/20/20 mixture to keep the soil moist and add the same amount we added to the 20/20/20 to the sand/soil mixture. We will keep track on how dry or moist each soil mixtures get as the plants continue to grow. We will...
Conclusion What claim can we make from our experiment? What are possible explanations for our results? How do the data we collected and our reasoning with scientific ideas support our claim? What future experiments could be done to expand on the results of this experiment?
About this Project

This project has EXCELLENT communication between the students and mentor. They are very detailed in their posts and ask great questions. I also liked the fun back and forth that the students and mentor had when signing their names on the posts. I think this project gives the best example of...

Updates

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PlantingScience Staff
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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.

Please come back and visit the PlantingScience Project Gallery anytime to view this project in the future. You can search the Gallery by key word, team name, topic, or school name.

Good bye for now.
Warm regards,
The PlantingScience team
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.
Autumn
said

Dear Favorite and Only Mentor,

    We just wanted to get on here and thank you for all of your help! You've helped all of us with so much during this project, and it's so sad to have to part ways with you. Thank you for all the lovely names you've addressed us as and for taking time out of your day to help not only us, but other groups as well. We are forever grateful! 

                                                                                          We will miss you! 

                                                                                            Yours Truly, 

                                                                                           Autumn, Jade, and (Plant-Killer) Summer :)

Autumn
said

Dear Jill,

    We've been keeping a strong eye out on our plants. It seems that the sand/soil mixture is stunting the growth for our plants kept in that soil. The 20/20/20 mixture has been doing pretty good by itself. We have figured out what we are going to be experimenting on. We plan to add a certain amount of water to the 20/20/20 mixture, depending on how dry the soil is on top. Then, we will add the same amount of water from the 20/20/20 mixture, to the sand soil/mixture to see the different affects on the plants. We plan to keep track on how dry or moist each soil mixture gets. The temperature of the water would be staying constant, and the amount of water may change, depending on the dryness of the soil. We will see the difference by the plants growth and healthiness, and the soil moisture. 

                                                                                        Your Happy Pupils,

                                                                                         Autumn, Jade, and Summer :)

    Jill Marzolino
    said

    Dear Autumn, Jade, and Summer, 

    That's a fantastic idea! It looks like you really thought about how to isolate the variable you're interested in with the supplies you have. Just be careful to keep track of how much water you add to the soil mixture so you can match it for the sand. Looking forward to your updates, and happy Halloween!

                                                                                        Your witchy adviser, Jill

Autumn
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Autumn
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Autumn
said

Dear Jill, 

    We have some unfortunate news. Summer accidentally uprooted one of our plants. We attempted to replant it, but the outcome is to be determined. We also decided to research how the amount of water can affect our plants growth and survival. We want to see the affect of the water on our plants, and see if more water will either stunt or increase our plantlings growth. ( yes, plantlings is not a word, but it's cute.)

                                                                Sorry About The Uprooted Plant, 

                                                                Autumn, Jade, and Summer :) 

                                                                                    

    Jill Marzolino
    said

    Hi Plantlings :)

    Your seedling will probably be fine especially if it only has a small root that you can pull up and down in the soil still. We'll have to keep an eye on it though for proper records. And definitely don't worry about an accident like that, something always goes wrong in an experiment and that's why you learn to make backup samples! I usually calculate how many plants I need times the germination rate of my organism (~80% for barley) and a fudge rate (~1.2x) or plant in duplicate (x2) so that I'll have enough plants no matter what goes wrong. 

    The normal soil and sandy soil hold water differently, as you can probably see from other plants in your classroom. Sandy soil lets water drain faster but if it gets saturated it also retains water longer. 

    If you want to see the effect of water, then you need to isolate the soil differences. You could divide your plants into 4 pots instead of 2. Then you have a control (normal water in normal soil, in sandy soil) and an experimental (excess water in normal soil, in sandy soil) group.

    Or if you keep 2 plots with different soil then the experiment is about how different soils respond to the same amount of water. Either way you need a test and a control group. The variables you're working with are soil type and amount of water. You can measure things like plant height, number of leaves, and soil moisture. 

    Why don't you try to design a question that explicitly states what is being tested and then answer what needs to be controlled (independent vs dependent variables)? If you have any ideas you want to bounce around or questions about this process I'm always here to help!

                                                                Your Ebullient Mentor, Jill

Autumn
said

Hi Jill,

    Can you tell us why our plants' have a variation of color stems? Some of them have purplish white stems, and some have just white or green. Are we doing anything wrong? Thanks!!

                                                                        From your curious pupils, 

                                                                            Autumn, Jade, and Summer :)

    

    Jill Marzolino
    said

    Hello hello, 

    That variation is totally normal! You can think of it the same as different hair or eye colors. Different amounts of color are put down in different spots. The colors you're seeing are green, purple, and white, so all your plants should have some pattern of those colors. 

    Plants have a  red/blue/purple pigment called anthocyanin (in most grasses like barley and your Brassica seeds it's purple but it's why blueberries are blue and cherries red). These plants will often have purple lines in the stem or on the seeds. Unfortunately I don't have any pictures right now, but my favorite variety of barley has all deep purple seeds and it's really pretty. 

    So don't fear, your plants are healthy, happy, and beautiful!

    Jill Marzolino
    said

    I found some examples for you to see, there's normal yellowish barley and then a type that has the purple-black pigment. In that picture you can also see different locations that can be affected. You can see purple in stems, leaves, grains, and those long filaments that come off the heads. Some plants will be purple all over, some in just the base of the stem, etc. It just depends on where the pigment is told to go in that individual. 

Jill Marzolino
uploaded 2086062968barleyimage.jpg, black_eagle_wheat-1.jpg in project files
Autumn
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Autumn
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Autumn
said

Hi, Jill! :)

On the bag of soil, we already had the NPK ratio so we calculated based off of that. We figured we would give the plants 10mL a day, or just enough for one inch of the topsoil to be damp. Cacti store lots of water, therefore, they do not need to be watered as frequently. It seems like our plants are growing very well under fluorescent light. It seems that plants grow very well in blue and red light. Plants cool down, or their temperature drops. They are no longer growing towards the sun anymore, once it goes down. 

As for the temperature of our plants, on Saturday and Sunday, we did not have a heat source so the temperature stayed around 50-55 degrees Fahrenheit, while the plants should've been 78-82. They still sprouted, however. If the plants were to stay in this temperature, then it would most likely stunt their growth. 

                                                                                                                    From Your Excited Pupils,

                                                                                                                        Autumn, Summer, and Jade

    Jill Marzolino
    said

    Hi Excitettes, 

     

    Seems like you gals are totally on top of things! 

    Indeed, cacti have roots that are really susceptible to rot if they get too much water. A lot of tropical plants also have weak root systems, like so called "air plants" because they evolved in a place that constantly has high humidity so they absorb water from the air. 

    When plants get shaded (like a bigger plant blocks their view) they start to stretch and grown their stems like if someone sat in front of you in a theater and you have to crane your neck around them to see. And they detect the amount of shade there is through the ratio of red to blue light. If there's a lot of red light (which is long wave so it has an easier time going around obstacles) the plants know there are obstacles. A lot of blue light means the sun & grow up up up! It may help to think about or look up why the sky appears blue in the day and red at sunset/sunrise. 

    At nighttime plants breathe out CO2 and use energy and oxygen just like us! Photosynthesis fuels their growth normally and survival when there's no immediate energy source. 

    These plants are similar to the one most plant biologists work with and it prefers colder temperatures, so I doubt your seeds will really mind. That and many such seeds sprout well after 'vernalization' or a cold and dark period like they'd experience over winter in the soil. Still I'm sure your plants are appreciating their constant light, water and love :)

                                                                    -the effusive mentor

Summer
said

Hello Jill,

I just wanted to update you, a bit. one of the data collection we are measuring is in the end how many out of all 18 grew (9 per soil mixture). For the nutrient mixture all nine are growing above ground and the 2/3 mixture we have six out of nine growing above ground

                                                                                            From you proud Pupils,

                                                                                                Autumn, Summer, and Jade

Summer
said

Hello Jill,

I just wanted to update you, a bit. one of the data collection we are measuring is in the end how many out of all 18 grew (9 per soil mixture). For the nutrient mixture all nine are growing above ground and the 2/3 mixture we have six out of nine growing above ground

                                                                                            From you proud Pupils,

                                                                                                Autumn, Summer, and Jade

Autumn
said

Dear Jill, 

Today we finally planted our seeds and calculated the soil ratios, amount of light, and amount of water needed for the planting process. Then, we measured out the soil 1/3rd sand and 2/3rd nutrient soil in one half two liter bottle. In the other half, we kept the nutrient soil as 100%. We planted nine seeds, one knuckle deep, in each bottle. 18 seeds total. :) 

                                                                                                From Your Lovely Pupils,

                                                                                                    Autumn, Summer, and Jade

    Jill Marzolino
    said

    Hello lovelies!

    That's awesome, planting seeds always leaves me with such a feeling of potential. Make sure you give them lots of well-wishes. 

    How did you calculate the soil ratio you're using? And how much water will you give them/at what interval? You probably learned about soil nutrients and maybe how plants hydrate themselves, and we generally think rich soil and regular rain = good, but can you think of some plants that don't do well with rich soil and regular watering? 

    Now for some light talk: did I mention I used to work on how plants respond to light? 

    What light does your plant grow best in? Do you know what colors on the light spectrum a plant uses? What do plants do when they're in a shady spot, what about when the sun goes down? 

    If you have pictures of your setup (and sprouting seedlings next week) I'd love to see what you've constructed!

                                                                    --Your Luminescent Mentor

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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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