A cool lab idea.

flash14756(z6 Boise, Idaho USA)December 15, 2005

Here is a lab that I designed but may not be able to do so I would appreciate someone else doing it and posting the progress. Record things like leaf color, leaf size, general apperance, and othe vital signs daily. Reply and tell me what you think

Effects of Macronutrients on Tomato Growth


 To discover the effects that the macronutrients have on a plantÂs growth


8 tomato seedlings (All same height, approximately 4in. tall)

8 flasks

Light Source

All Purpose Fertilizer (10-10-10)

Nitrogen Fertilizer (10-0-0)

Phosphorous Fertilizer (0-10-0)

Potassium Fertilizer (0-0-10)

Copper Fertilizer

Sulfur Fertilizer

Magnesium Fertilizer

Mineral Water

Distilled Water

Hypothesis: Different macronutrients affect different aspects of a plantÂs growth


1. Slide the tomato seedlings out of their containers and in tepid water carefully remove all dirt from around the roots.

2. Insert roots into flasks.

3. Label the flasks -N, -P, -K, -Cu, -S, -Mg, +control, -control.

4. Fill all flasks but +control and Âcontrol with mineral water, fill the remaining two with distilled water.

5. Put all fertilizers except for the one on the label in the first six flasks. In +control put the all purpose fertilizer and in -control donÂt put anything.

6. Watch, wait, and fertilize

PS- You dont have to use tomatoes.In fact, it would be realy cool if diferent people do it with diferent plants.

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maineman(z5a ME)


Except for the day-to-day reports, that sort of experiment has already been done many times on many plants. It is possible to "read" the appearance of a plant and identify a nutrient deficiency or deficiencies. You can find lots of this kind of information by using Google or some other good Internet search tool.

A few examples of what you can find are Plant Nutrient Deficiencies, Plant Nutrient Deficiency Symptoms, Essential Plant Nutrients, and Color Pictures of Mineral Deficiencies in Plants.


    Bookmark   December 15, 2005 at 10:38PM
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albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

All Purpose Fertilizer (10-10-10)
Nitrogen Fertilizer (10-0-0)
Phosphorous Fertilizer (0-10-0)
Potassium Fertilizer (0-0-10)

Any or all of these may have micronutrients as contaminants that far exceed the need of the plant. One would need to mix these from reagent grade chemicals for the experiment design to have any validity. I recall one time we were testing for the affect of zinc on tomatoes and found that one commercial fertilizer had more zinc than was needed even though no zinc was on the label.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2005 at 1:50PM
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jderosa(z6 NJ)

Instead opf using tomato plants, consider using duckweed (an aquatic plant). Counting the leaves that grow would be the way to determine which fertilizer is most effective. As an added bonus, Duckweed grows extremely fast.

Joe 'YMMV' DeRosa

    Bookmark   January 1, 2006 at 6:44PM
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