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Science Fair Project: How Will Different Nutrients and Fertilizers Affect the Growth of Plants?

This fun and educational project about how different plants will grow when they are fed with different fertilizers will be a good one for science fair.

The human race needs good food and water and sunshine to grow healthy and so do plants.

Improper or insufficient fertilizer can slow plant growth or cause deficiency symptoms such as leaf chlorosis (yellowing), leaf death and stunting. Lack of fertilizer means the plant has inadequate levels of mineral nutrients it needs to make essential compounds or for general metabolism, such as nitrogen for proteins and chlorophyll, magnesium for chlorophyll, and several micronutrients as enzyme activators.

A plant that is deficient in nitrogen loses its normal green color because it cannot make enough green chlorophyll.

Supplements of vitamins and minerals help humans get the nutrients they need, and fertilizer performs a similar function for plants. Some nutrients are more important than others, but getting all of them helps to ensure that a plant grows as well as possible.

In addition to oxygen, hydrogen and carbon, the nutrients most critical to plant growth are nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, which can be found in virtually every brand of fertilizer on the market.

In this project, you will need materials to do the experiments that you choose. You may wish to test one or two or three, or even more different types of plants. For example you may wish to experiment with tomatoes and radishes. Or you may also want to test peppers and green beans. The choice is up to you.

You may also want to test two different fertilizers or several. Again, it all depends on how involved you want your project to be. You may use Miracle-Gro and Shultz Instant Fertilizers. You can also choose Dyna-Gro, BioBizz, Dutch Master, Flairform, Grotek, or any other fertilizer you wish.

You will require peat pots for planting your seeds. The number of pots you require is entirely up to you. It depends on how many different types of plants you wish to experiment with, and how many different types of fertilizer you want to test.

You will need a quality potting soil and containers for water, about a quart size more or less. You will also need measuring spoons and glass panes. You must have seeds of the type of plants that you choose, and fertilizer, as well as a pen and a fluorescent light.

In order to begin your experiment for this science fair project, take your peat pots for growing seed and mark each pot with three items of information. Indicate what the seed is; for example "tomato", or "radish" and also mark the pot with the type of fertilizer that you will be using on that seed; for example "Miracle-Gro" or "BioBizz". Then mark each pot with sample l, or sample 2 or sample 3. It is your choice to decide just how many different types of seed you will use and how many different types of fertilizer you will use. For purposes of example, we will proceed here as if you were using tomato and radish seeds and Miracle-Gro and BioBizz fertilizer.

We suggest that you use three different pots for each type of seed and fertilizer combination. This will give you a better chance to get average results than if you used only one pot for each seed and fertilizer combination. Using our example, you will need six tomato pots (three for one fertilizer and three for the second fertilizer), and you will also need six radish pots (three for each fertilizer).

Fill each pot with 3/4 cup of potting soil. Put 3 seeds in each cup and cover the seeds with 1/4 in. of soil. Fill water containers. Put the recommended amount of fertilizer (usually tsp) of one of the fertilizers in one of the water containers and do the same with the second fertilizer. Shake very well to assure that the fertilizer is mixed well in the water. Make certain that you properly identify the containers so that you know which fertilizer is being used. Water each plant carefully, enough to get it wet without soaking and building up excess water. Shake the water container before you water to assure that the fertilizer stays well mixed. Cover the pots with glass pane to create a green house effect. Keep the glass on until you detect some growth and then remove it and keep it off. Place the plants by a window where it can get lots of sun.

Put a fluorescent light over the plants and keep it on during the daytime, turning it off at night Water the plants every day. Do not over water. Periodically measure the height of the plants so that you can determine which fertilizer is doing a better job.

READ ON for more information about this "Growing" project.


 



 

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