1, 2, 3, Grow!

By Beata Ariana-Minniti and Malek Ali
Elementary Category (Grades 4-6)
Experiment | Agriculture

Objective:
Many different types of fertilizers exist for local community vegetable growers, ranging from natural to synthetic agents. We performed an experiment to compare the effects of different fertilizers on the growth of pea plants.

Materials & Methods:
We planted sprouted pea seeds in soil supplemented by 4 different fertilizers (Horse Manure, Compost, Miracle Gro, and Worm Castings), and also a non-supplemented control. Plants were maintained under identical conditions with respect to temperature, sunlight, and water. Measurements of plant growth were documented at the same time each day for a period of 2 weeks. As well, a time-lapse movie was taken during this timeframe to visually document the growth.

Results:
When compared to pea plants grown with no fertilizer (controls), pea plants fertilized with horse manure resulted in the greatest growth, followed by those fertilized with worm castings, and then Miracle Gro, which was similar to results obtained from fertilizing with compost.

Conclusions:
All fertilizer options resulted in greater growth than no fertilizer at all. Among the fertilizers, Horse Manure resulted in the fastest and tallest growth among the options we examined.

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