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Carrot growth with differing wavelegnths of light

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Introduction: Daucus carota is a root that has small flowers but is capable of self fertilization and is biennial since it grows vegetatively in the first season and produces seeds in the second (Plants for a future 2008). It was originally native to Asia in colors ranging from purple to yellow to white with orange being the most prominent today (Carrots). The Daucus carota is capable of growing in many different conditions and regions from Asia to the Americas and Europe and Africa as long as there is direct sunlight (Carrots). This plant is hardy since it can grow in many temperatures from 10�C to 25�C, however from 15�C to 20�C is optimal, but can still grow in colder conditions, though much slower (Carrots). Daucus carota also prefers loose, deep soil that is well irrigated, but in more compacted soil it can grow however the root tends to be crooked or split. (Carrots). Lastly, this plant can grow in many pH ranges from 4.2 to 8.7 with 6.5 to 7.5 being the optimal range (Plants for a future 2008). In order for photosynthesis to occur, there must be a light source to provide energy for the necessary reactions. This experiment will use different wavelengths of light to discover which one promotes growth the most for Daucus carota. Explained by the action spectrum diagram, different colors of light promote growth more or less efficiently than others. As shown, light in the violet-blue range and red range are absorbed by the plant the most and thus are most effective colors for promoting photosynthesis while the yellow-green range is rather ineffective since it is bounced off the plant and chlorophyll giving it a green color (Allot 2007). Every color in the action spectrum has a different wavelength. Green light is 510 nm, blue light is 475 nm, and red light is 650 nm. White light is a combination of all visible colors giving it a wavelength range of 400-700 nm. ...read more.


An X represents a plant that has died. Also, every day means day measured over a two week period- The plants were measured every other day. The error is � 0.1 cm, � 0.1 ml for water, � .5 for ph. The Standard Deviations Color of Light Standard Deviation Blue 0.24 Red 1.02 Green 1.84 White 1.06 Table 2: The standard deviations (height in cm) of the average final heights for each experimental group. The error is � 0.1 cm, � 0.1 ml for water, � .5 for ph. Average Growth of Daucus carota Light colors Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 Day 7 Blue 2.93 2.97 2.92 3.02 3.54 3.77 3.82 Red 2.03 2.25 2.65 2.80 3.00 3.30 3.44 Green 2.43 2.27 2.30 2.37 2.31 2.37 2.50 White 2.50 2.72 3.11 3.21 3.56 3.73 3.91 Table 3: The average growth of Daucus carota (in cm). Keep in mind the plants were measured every other day with each day standing for day 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7 over a two week period. The heights shown are of total height, not of the change from one day to another. The error is � 0.1 cm, � 0.1 ml for water, � .5 for ph. Figure 1: A graph showing the average growth in cm of Daucus carota over a two week period. Every day means day measured as the plants were measured every other day. Where the lines appear to be one, the growth height is similar. The error is � 0.1cm for height, � 0.1 ml for water, � .5 for ph. Dead Daucus carota Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 Day 7 Blue Light 20 19 18 15 8 5 5 Red Light 20 20 19 19 18 16 16 Green Light 20 20 19 17 13 6 6 White Light 20 20 19 19 17 17 16 Table 4: The amount of living plants per day measured. ...read more.


Clones would allow for the same plant to be used in every experimental group eliminating speculations concerning genetic variation. While this experiment was conducted as accurately as possible, there are a few improvements that could be made. Increasing sample size and the amount of days utilized would yield more specific results since there would be more data included in the study and there would be more time for the plants to show their growth potential. As previously mentioned, using seeds that all had the same genetic makeup would yield the most accurate results because each plant would then have the same traits which would eliminate the speculation of whether or not a plant was hardy or genetically not up to par. Another improvement would be to either rotate the plants or move the light source from the middle of the group to the sides so all plants would have equal opportunities to absorb light and grown (since plants on the edge get less light then plants directly under the lamp). Also, since this experiment was conducted in a closed closet with no ventilation, using a fan to move carbon dioxide around might yield a more conclusive result since then the gas would not be a limiting factor. Finally, measuring the plants at the same time would yield more consistent results because then there would be a steady, scheduled water supply. Literature Cited: Agriculture.kzntl.gov.za, Carrots, http://agriculture.kzntl.gov.za/downloads/files/Horticulture%5Ccarrots.pdf Allot, A. (2007). Biology for the IB Diploma. New York: Oxford Plants for a future, Daucus carota sativus, 2008, http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Daucus+carota+sativus Appendices: Photo credits to Max Goldstein An Experimental Group Figure 3: A photograph of the experimental group exposed to green light. The cups are arranged in a 4 groups of 5 manner. The Materials Figure 4: These are the basic materials used in the experiment. The Setup Figure 5: This is how the room was arranged to minimize outside light affecting the experiment. The stacked boxes served as my dividers. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 | Page ...read more.

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