Growth Analysis Report Essay Example

  • Category:
    Biology
  • Document type:
    Assignment
  • Level:
    High School
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    5
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    3158

Growth Analysis Report

Introduction

Phosphorus and nitrogen has been identified as essential nutrients that supports crop production. The problem with many researches is that, they have not clearly addressed the exact levels of these nutrients that can sustain the crop production, and how the change in their levels affects the crop production (Fichtner and Schulze 236). Analysis of almost all biochemical compounds supporting growth and development of crops has shown that essentially, they contain nitrogen and phosphorous element. Lack or reduction in levels of these chemicals affects crop yield, and quite often, it may record a lost growth in plant height and biomass. This means that, there is a sensitive relationship between the plant growth, and levels of these chemicals. There are few options that have been identified to be viable in serving as a substitute to the essential compounds or changing their composition in seeds (Andrews et al 949). They have noted as being key chemicals that supports growth of plants and seed formation. It has been identified that, soils that lack these minerals can not effectively support growth of plants, and if growth is not sustained on these soils, artificial Nitrogen and phosphorous elements should be added. This means that the environmental composition of these soils is a key to plant growth, and must be examined and monitored to ensure that it can support the growth of different types of plants.

Few options to increase accumulation of phosphorous P in crops, but rigid limitations of the nitrogen intake shows that without external sources of nitrogen N, biological fixation of the nitrogen element is required. The experiment was conducted to determine how Nitrogen and phosphorous requirements varied across different species (Fichtner and Schulze 237).

Materials and Methods

Research should be directed at determining the relationships that exist between the legumes and the nitrogen fixation mechanism. Improved management of P has shown positive improvement in N fixation by the leguminous plants, and their related yields. Study of these materials involved several materials and data collection methods. The methods were chosen with the rationale that choosing a good method is sustainable and it enables the researcher to achieve excellent results that can then be assessed for viability, when the information is disseminated to the audiences. Nitrogen is sensitive and its presence or absence affects the growth of plants with their related yields (Andrews et al 958).

For this experiment to be successful, excellent materials were selected. The materials included corn which was identified as (Zea mays of cv. SR78 type), Barley which was identified as Hordeumvulgarecv. Schooner, and finally the Pisumsativum, identified as filed peas (Fichtner and Schulze 237). The three species were selected with fully understanding that they present different nitrogen and phosphorous requirements. It was also considered that the three chosen species would represent or give results that represent different soil environments because the field peas were to give the relationship between the nutrients and the soil environments of different places (Andrews et al 949).

Solutions of other chemicals were also selected to serve as materials in the experiment. They include water, sand soils, Debco solution, Hoagland solution, trays, Aquasol, Hortico solution, urea, and a glass complex (Fichtner and Schulze 238). The main idea is that, the selection of these chemicals was considered after it was determined that they were excellent solutions that would help in identifying the rates at which the composition of chemicals affected growth of the plants. Some of the solution materials were to be diluted to specific Molar levels in order to improve the capacity of the plants to show good results especially when the results are presented on graphs (Taub 36). Choice of suitable materials is a pre requisite to getting reliable and effective results that reveals the information about the growth of plants and their compositions (Andrews et al 949).

The corn, barley, and field peas were sown on 2-March-2012 into trays that contained Debco, a seed rising mix, and after six days, the germinating seedlings having achieved the same developmental stages and similar growth sizes were chosen and planted in pots of sand mixed soils, after which they were watered, and later placed in Glasshouse complex. The soil was mixed with sand in the ratio of 1:4 so that a uniform mixture could be obtained. The second experiment was undertaken to determine initial measurements which were taken on March 12, 2012, and finalized on 13 March of 2012. After the initial measurements were taken, the plants were watered about three times weekly with Hoagland solution which was modified by changing the solution Molar (Andrews et al 949). The Hoagland solution used contained 16.0 mM NO3 and 8.0 mM NH4+ or noted as (High N). The modification also included uses of NO3or the NH4+ (Low Nitrogen). Hoagland solution was applied in enough quantities in order to ensure that the soil and sand mix remained highly moist, but was ensured that at the end of the watering period, only a little portion of the solution remained in the trays (Fichtner and Schulze 240).

The Hoagland solution was applied such that some of the plants were watered with High N solution while others were watered with Low N solution while some of the plants remained in the tray to serve as a control mechanism to the experiment. However, on 21 March 2012, some of the corn plants that were planted in High N solution treatment began to show symptoms that were consistent with Nitrogen deficiency (Andrews et al 953). The symptoms consistent with the deficiency were such that, the first leaf started to turn yellow. After noting this aspect, the solution was evenly doubled and still, after two days, the first leaves of the corn plants were turning yellow. This observation indicated that there was a diminishing amount of Nitrogen among the corn plants, and therefore, it was decided and agreed upon that the solution being used had caused problems to growth of corn plants and that a new dimension was required. As a measure, the plants in High N plant treatment category were watered with Aquasol® or (Hortico) of (1.6g/L, that contained 0.3 mM MAP component, 1.5 mM KNO3 and the 5.3 mM Urea). This was done in a period of one week, and the solution was then applied in double strength for the other remaining part of the experiment (Andrews et al 956). This methodology was chosen to ensure that some part of the experiment remained unaffected so that it could serve as a control experiment (Fichtner and Schulze 239). Good methods are good and sustainable because they dictate occurrence of the final results of the experiment. Wrong choice of research or experimental methods often affects the final orientation of the results, and if presented, the audiences can fail to understand the way in which Nitrogen levels and uptake affect the growth of plants or sustain the food production among plants. This rationale was considered so that good results could be obtained and presented to help in determining the levels of nitrogen in solutions (Taub 35).

Experimental methods are sensitive and it was therefore considered that the three experiment species could help in determining the most sustainable levels of the nutrients that could be absorbed by the plants at any specific periods of time. In order to control the experiment, some of the plants were left in the pots so that their growth could easily be compared with the plants that were transferred to soil and sand mixed solutions (Andrews et al 957). This gives an accurate comparison of the uptake speeds of the nutrients among the species and how their levels varied with different environmental conditions. Testing of samples or test of crops is a demanding task because it involves determining the exact time at which the changes are first noted, with the corresponding rises and falls in concentrations of the chemicals (Taub 34). Measurements of plants may be a tricky entity for researchers because the rate of growth varies across species, and it may also vary depending with the quality of the seeds that were planted. Rate of watering also affects the growth and development rates of various crops, and for consistency monitoring, it is best when initial growth rates or measurements are done on same species and recorded separately in a table for comparison purposes. Nutrient uptake among plant species also varies with number of crops being experimented, and therefore, a provision for comparison between the species should be provided or availed (Fichtner and Schulze 241).

Experimental design

The experiment was designed in a systematic way in which the values could be compared between species (Fichtner and Schulze 236). The main aim was to identify or determine the effect of nitrogen N deficiency on plants and to show how different solutions contained different percentages of nitrogen. Exposing crops to environments with fewer amounts or varying amount of nitrogen affects growth of plant, and as a response, the plants gives different symptomatic expressions such as yellowing of the leaves or thinning of the leaves (Taub 34). The experiment involved use of three replicate trays in which different species and each tray consisted of 5 experimenting pots. In total, each species was placed on three trays which were all watered with different solutions after which the measurements of their growth and the change in their outlook were accurately noted (Andrews et al 956). However, for each tray containing the three species, a few plants on a separate tray was noted and considered as a control experiment for other two sets of plants that were planted in soils of high N and low N. After noting the first changes in colour of leaves, the solutions were changed, in order to orient the experiment in a more suitable position that could generate good results. The change in growth of each plant was noted, and recorded separately so that the variations in growths of different species could not be confused.

The rates of measurements were on different dates but all of which were prompted by either change in size of the plants, biomass, or change of physical appearance of plants. Sowing of the whole set of plant species was done on 2nd March 2012, and after 6 days, only species that had attained similar growth sizes and biomass quantities were transferred into the soil-sand mixed medium. The ration at which the soil was mixed with sand was maintained throughout the experiment so that the internal various could be noted and identified considerably (Andrews et al 953). Concentrations for high N and for the low N were equitably noted, and the Molar ration was maintained throughout the trays for all the species. This was done so that a comparison could be made between the growth patterns of the plants. Watering was also done uniformly to ensure that no gap exist with reference to variations in application rates. All conditions were uniformly maintained together with soil mixing ratios (Fichtner and Schulze 239).

The second experimental measurements were accurately done on 12 and 13 March of 2012. During this time, the measurements in their growth was noted and only seedlings with similar sizes and biomass were selected, and exposed to watering of solutions containing different concentrations. Other features that were noted during this time included the change in leaf sizes, and the change in sizes of shoots. The first symptoms were noted in corns seedlings on 21 March 2012 whereby the first leaves started to change in colour, and therefore prompting the change in concentrations of the solution, changing the solution, and changing the rate at which the solutions were applied (Andrews et al 949).

Results and Discussions

Shoot Dry weight

Growth Analysis Report

The results in figure 1 shows that there was a significant growth of the shoot, and increase in mass of the shoot when the seedlings were watered with solution rich in nitrogen. However, the corn seedlings presented a higher increase in the shoot mass compared to others, and the same can be noted by comparing the percentage increase in shoot mass of the seedlings (Andrews et al 954). The barley recorded the lowest increase compared to other seedlings even though the increase was significant, and positively correlated. This means that the shoot mass weight of the field pea had a higher response to the nitrogen levels than the barley. However, the percentage increase in mass of the shoot was highly noted among the barley seedlings, followed by the corn, and then the field pea. This means that the rate varies among species, and it is less among the field seedlings or plants because there are no much loose soils (Fichtner and Schulze 237). The tiller numbers of barley reduced significantly, when the environment with regard to N concentrations were changed. This means that barley tillers or the yield could only be increased by adding nitrogen to the soils, and maintaining the concentrations.

Leaf Area

Growth Analysis Report  1

From the analysis in Fig 2, it is clear that when seedlings were subjected to watering with Nitrogen rich solutions, the areas of leaves increased considerably (Fichtner and Schulze 240). The growth in solutions with low nitrogen levels was average, and therefore could not sustain reliable photosynthesis that could lead to efficient manufacture of food, and therefore, it was associated with reduced yields. However, when the seedlings are watered constantly but not excessively with highly nitrogen levels, the areas of leaves got increased, and as a result, the levels at which photosynthesis occurred also increased. In comparison, the increase in area of leaves was high in corn, pea, and barley respectively (Andrews et al 952).

DM Partitioning to roots

Growth Analysis Report  2

The DM partitioning results presented in Fig 3 outlines that the DM partitioning to roots with 0 N was high highly noticed among all seedlings but with lot of evidence occurring among the barley (Andrews et al 950). This means that the DM partitioning to roots was highly sensitive among the barley that had 0 Nitrogen, and the lowest response was recorded or noted among the field pea. Comparing the 0 N and +N environments indicates, that the corn deviated greatly, with the lowest deviation being noted among the field peas (Sinclair & Vadez 8). With regard to percentage changes, the response was almost constant in the field peas, while the deviation was high in corn and lowest in barley (Fichtner and Schulze 241).

RGR

Growth Analysis Report  3

The results in Fig 4 outline that, The RGR for corn was high in +N environments with a significant lower RGR in 0 N solutions. This means that performance of the RGR of corn was sustainable and effective in +N environments rather than in 0 N environment (Sinclair & Vadez 7). The same was also consistent with barley, field pea but the percentage variation between the +N and 0N environments was highly noted in corn then barley but with a little variation in pea. A keen scrutiny also reveals that, the RGR levels among the field peas were also highly in 0 N environments even though slightly below the performance or response in +N environments. The results also show that the field pea is more resistant to the changes in RGR when subjected to different N environments than the barley, and the corn (Andrews et al 951). However the fluctuations were highly noted in the corn seedlings (Fichtner and Schulze 239).

LAR

Growth Analysis Report  4

The LAR value increased significantly when the seedlings were subjected to O N environments, even though the results also showed that there was no notable difference for barley. With regard to percentage orientations, it is clear that LAR was more positively correlated in 0 N environments for corn than in + N environments than the barley which presented a zero change (Andrews et al 950). This means that even though the effect of LAR was best noted in 0N environments, it was evidenced more in some species than the others. The changes also vary with the root system, and the environments in which the seedlings are placed. For similar cases, some seedlings are more resistant to the changes than others even when the conditions are the same (Fichtner and Schulze 242).

NAR

Growth Analysis Report  5

The NAR value was positively correlated in +N environments or solutions but with a lag in the NAR value when the seedlings were subjected to the 0 N. There was a significant rise notable among the barley than corn and pea (Andrews et al 949). This indicates that the environment with reference to NAR favours the orientation of barley than other species, even though they all responded positively. However for barley, the percentage in response when watered with 0 N solutions was higher, and then it was followed by corn (Sinclair & Vadez 2). However, the response rate in pea when placed in + N solution was highly noted than in 0 N environments. The SE values were however evidenced to vary slightly but with a positive trend in corn when in 0 N environment, and barley. However, the case was different in pea because the SE value was positively correlated in + N than in 0 N solution (Burns, Walker and Moorby 321).

SLA

Growth Analysis Report  6

In 2012, the barley was almost resistant with regard to the SLA value because the + N solution was not in correct proportions that could sustain its production capability (Burns, Walker and Moorby 321). The same was noted among the pea and the corn. It was also determined that, production of maize and barley and pea was strongly dependent on the levels and fluctuation in amount of nutrients (Andrews et al 949).

Conclusions

The experiment was successful and it was noted that levels of nitrogen highly affected the way in which the seedlings developed or the way the crops produce food in farms. The behavior of different plants and or crops varies with different concentrations of Nitrogen, and the variability is high in corn and less in field pea. This is because the pea has the capability of adjusting to the levels, than the cereals plants. Lastly, changing levels of nitrogen in soils has a capability of changing physiological properties of plants, and the amount of food produced or manufactured by crops or the rate at which the seedlings develop.

Works Cited

Andrews et al. Relationships between shoot to root ratio, growth and leaf soluble protein concentration of Pisum sativum, Phaseolus vulgaris and Triticum aestivum under different nutrient deficiencies. Plant, Cell and Environment. 22 (1999): 949-958. Print.

Burns IG, Walker RL, Moorby J. “How do nutrients drive growth? Plant and Soil.” 196 (1997): 321–325.

Fichtner, K. & Schulze, E.D. “The effect of nitrogen nutrition on growth and biomass partitioning of annual plants originating from habitats of different nitrogen availability.” Oecologia, 92 (1992): 236-241. Print.

Sinclair, T.R. & Vadez, V. “Physiological traits for crop yield improvement in low N and P environments.” Plant and Soil, 245 (2002): 1-15. Print.

Taub, D. R. “Analysis of interspecific variation in plant growth responses to nitrogen”. Can.J. Bot. 80 (2002): 34-41. Print.