The purpose of this experiment is to find out whether plants really need water to grow or whether they just need to be kept wet. What is the purpose of a plant s roots? What types of nutrients do plants need in order to survive? Why do plants need water? What happens to a plant that does not get enough water? How do plants create energy? Plants need sunlight, nutrient rich soil and water to grow. Though the quality of the water has an effect on the plant s health, there are many plants that are able to grow even when they are given water that is polluted or that has some salt content. Most plants are unable to grow out of water that is as salty as the ocean, though there are a few varieties that can. Water is not always in abundant supply, and when it comes down to making sure that people have enough to drink, sometimes plants are asked to go without. Farmers have turned to using brackish water, or water that has a low salt content, for their crops. Understanding what types of fluids plants can use can help scientists learn more about how to meet the needs of plants as well as people in times of draught.
Seeds (green bean seeds work well because they grow quickly and are hardy. )
Label the containers, Water/Control, Milk, Juice, Cola, and Sports Drink. Fill the containers with potting soil. Plant three seeds in each of the pots as directed on the back of the seed package. Measure out cup of water and give it to the plants in the Water/Control container. Measure out cup of milk and give it to the plants in the Milk container. Measure out cup of juice and give it to the plants in the Juice container. Measure out cup of cola and give it to the plants in the Cola container. Measure out cup of sports drink and give it to the plants in the Sports Drink container. Place the plants in a warm, sunny place outdoors or in a window. Repeat steps 4-8 every other day. Record the growth of the plants on a chart such as the one below. PLANT GROWTH CHART PLANT GROWTH CHART Terms/Concepts: References: A lot of people who work in offices enjoy having potted plants around because the windows don t open, so they bring a little of the untouchable outdoors inside. Since plants need water, it s important to know how to water a plant.
How Much Water Should I Give My Plant? is the most common cause of death in indoor plants. If the roots of a plant are surrounded by water, they can t absorb oxygen. Does a plant need water or oxygen to survive? It needs both, so over-watering kills the plant by and preventing the plant from absorbing much-needed oxygen. There s no easy answer to how much water should I give my plant? This amount could depend on the type of plant you have, where it is located, how old the plant is and the type and size of the pot. Even soil conditions come into play as some soil holds more water than others. Plants with large or thin leaves usually need water more often than succulent plants. Does a succulent plant need water? Yes, but succulent plants have fleshier stems and leaves and can store more water during drought conditions. Therefore, they don t need as much water. During dormant conditions or just after heavy flowering or growth periods, plants require watering less often. You might ask yourself, How little water will kill a plant? Truth be known, it varies. How long can a plant last without water?
Once it dries out, not that long. Water your plant whenever it s necessary. The best way to know when it is necessary is to touch the soil. If the plant soil is dry to the touch, does the plant need water? Yes! Further, if you tap the pot and it sounds dull, the soil is moist below the surface, so your plant is probably safe. If it sounds hollow, watering is needed. When the soil is dry, water the plant thoroughly. In fact, water the plant until the water comes out of the bottom of the planter. This will guarantee that the bottom roots in the planter have gotten water as well. However, don t let the pot sit in the water on the saucer. Empty the saucer once it is done draining. Make sure the water temperature is between 62 and 72 F. (17-22 C. ). You don t want to shock the plant. Finally, keep in mind that if the plant wilts, you should still check the soil before watering because wilting doesn t necessarily mean the plant needs water. Now that you know how to water a plant and how little water will kill a plant, you canВ have healthy office or home plants for your enjoyment from now on.