Science Experiment - Knowledgebase Question

Minooka, IL
Avatar for jwooten
Question by jwooten
November 7, 1997
I am in the 7th grade and doing a science experiment to determine if different kinds of water (well, city, softened, etc.) will effect how a bean seed germinates. I wanted to do bean seeds but am not sure which kind would germinate the fastest and wouldlike to have your recommendation and also would be interested in your opinion if the kind of water will make a difference. Thank you very much and I will be looking forward to your answer.

Answer from NGA
November 7, 1997
It's an interesting experiment to try. I'm afraid, however, that the differences between the different types of water will be so subtle that you may not be able to notice any difference, especially if you are only growing a few plants for each treatment.

I have another idea for a test! You might try to mimic various environmental factors and how they affect seed germination. For example, water one set of seeds with a vinegar (or lemon juice) solution to mimic acid rain; another with vegetable or motor oil solution to mimic an oil spill; another with salt water solution to mimic road salt spray. Can you think of any other environmental conditions you could explore?

You can test these substances in various concentrations, and even apply them in various ways (soak seeds, spray on seedlings, apply to soil, etc.)

Whatever experiement you do, choose plants that are easy to grow. Beans are a classic "classroom" plant. Lawn grass planted in flats can be a very effective choice for illustrating environmental conditions. I hope this is helpful!

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