Hypothesis- I believe that the Osmocote granule fertilizer will perform the best for this experiment as it is tree seed specific, plus it has the longest release period of all the fertilizers and also a water or Wetting agent which will give it more nutrients than the other fertilizers and keep it saturated for longer it also contains all nutrients needed by the seeds such as Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Calcium and Potassium, and possibly giving it an advantage over the other tests for a bigger and healthier plant growth. Equipment List.
This test relies on various forms of granular only fertilizers to keep the test fair and a control test as a comparison. You will need- Nitrophoska Osmocote NPK fertilizer Blood and Bone Urea Control Six separate plastic pots (size should be 10cm by 8cm pots) A garden spoon A garden spade 1kg of Garden soil Watering can (with litre markings) pH Tester Moisture Tester Tape Measure Bird seeds Camera Safety- Due to dealing with Fertilizers, soil and other harmful substances some safety precautions are required to prevent any poisoning or irritations to the skin.
The most basic safety tenant for using fertilizer is the same as that of many other chemicals–store it in a cool, dry place, far out of the reach of children. If you store fertilizer in a garage or shed, keep it on a high shelf. Better yet, eliminate the chance for problems by locking the door that leads to the chemical storage. Always use gloves when handling fertilizer. The nitrogen in the fertilizer can cause a chemical burn, and it especially hurts if you have even the smallest cut or scrape. If you get fertilizer on your hands, wash them immediately under running water.
If any redness or burning occurs, call your doctor. Finally, read the instructions! Sit down and read the application directions every time you fertilize in order to understand your task and handle it properly. Always wear chemical goggles and adequate skin cover. Inspect equipment before each day’s work and correct any abnormal conditions. Water is the first aid treatment of choice when fertilizer particles get into the eyes or on the skin. In case of mishap, flush affected areas for 15 minutes and get medical help as soon as possible.
Method- Step One- Gather 1kg of soil and place evenly into all the 6 pots; fill the pots ? quarters of the way. Step Two- Then place half a garden spoon of bird seeds evenly in every pot, and then cover up the remainder of the pot with soil. Step Three- Label all of the pots with the corresponding fertilizers that will be placed into them. Step Four- Place 1 garden spoon full of fertilizers in every pot with their corresponding labels, making sure to evenly spread out the fertilizer to ensure that it doesn’t go all to one side.
Step Five- Now evenly place 100mL of water on every test, ensuring that you hold the watering can as close to the soil as possible, as raising it to high will destroy and unearth the seeds, ultimately placing your test in jeopardy. Place 100mL water into the pot tests every 3rd day after planting of the seeds. Step Six- Place the six pots in a shady area that will still get the sun but not too much, as leaving it overexposed to the sun will dry out the plants and the seeds might not sprout. Place pots in the sun for a few hours every day to ensure that they get enough sunlight to help them grow.
Fertiliser Day 1 Day 5 Day 9 Day 13 Day 17 Day 21 Day 25 Day 29 Day 33 Day 37 Day 41 Day45 Day 49 Day 53 Day 57 Blood and Bone Control NPK fertilizer Osmocote Nitrophoska Urea Step Seven- Form a table as shown Step Eight- This step takes the longest time and requires the most patience as plants take a while to grow so it may take a few days depending on the weather for the seeds to sprout, but when they do get the graph and a tape measure and individually measure the heights of plants in each test.
Pay close attention to the timing and the day schedule to make sure you don’t miss out on a day of recording. Step Nine- After one week of growth take a photo with a camera of all the fertilizer tests to keep a record of their growth in height in the time it takes to finish conducting this experiment. Also grab a pH tester and a moisture tester to record the acidic levels of the soil with the fertilizer and the water levels in each test, to later find out whether they have something to do with the fertilizer.
To test the plants for their pH level, shove the pH tester into the middle of the pot at least 2cm deep and wait about 5 seconds when the arrow indicator roughly settles into place then record your findings. To test for moisture levels, a similar procedure is followed as the pH test, shove the Moisture tester in the middle of the pot at least 2cm deep and wait 5-10seconds until the indicator has rested or stopped then record the moisture level. Record the results in the graph shown below- Water Moisture levels Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6
Blood And Bone Osmocote Nitrophoska Urea Control NPK Fert. Acidity of the Soil Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Blood and Bone Osmocote Nitrophoska Urea Control NPK Fert. Remember to fill in the table every week for six weeks. Do the same thing with the camera, take a photo of the plant growth for referencing. Step 10 Add a second round of fertilizer on the fourth week after first signs of germination to ensure that the fertilizer placed before hasn’t disappeared. In the Height or growth of the plants in the Weeks recorded the Osmocote test proved the clear winner with a total height of 29cm in 57 days and Urea close behind with 27cm Water Moisture levels Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4.
Osmocote, Nitrophoska and NPK fertilizer proved the be the winners in moisture levels and Nitrophoska being the clear winner of the day with the best Water moisture rating of all the tests, this is good as it can help with gardeners that are very busy and don’t always have the time to water their plants. On the other side Urea proved to be the worst offender in the least amount of water remaining in the pot, nearly every test showed up as it being dry, but this might have some logic as it was the most clustered growth and it was only second in height so the plants itself must have been draining the water leaving very little.
Acid levels should be in the range of 6. 1-7. 5 for healthy plant growth anything above or below this range is damaging the plants life expectancy and health, many of the fertilizers have balancers in them to either raise the alkaline level or reduce the acidic level, the best tests showed to be Urea and NPK fertilizer with a constant rate of neutral acidity the worst tests showed to be Nitrophoska and the Control as Nitrophoska got really close to acidic levels and the Control had close encounters with the alkaline levels.
The clear winner for this test was the Osmocote fertilizer as it had the highest and bulkiest growth of all tests it had the one of the highest water ratings and a good acidic level rating giving it the best position for granular fertilizer.
Discussion- the Osmocote proved to be the best fertilizer in more than one field, firstly in height it beat all other tests and secondly it had one of the best water ratings and acidity levels Urea was not very far behind it only rated badly in the water ratings with the lowest score of around 1 for nearly every test, but it does pay back with its bulk as it had the most concentration of seed growth and the second tallest height meaning a lot of the water that was absorbed left not much for when the recording was being done meaning a gardener might have a healthy big crop with Urea it would cost them more water wise as they would have to pay more for water bills to keep the plant saturated and alive.
But the Urea fertilizer only contained Nitrogen and no other component making it near first place for best fertilizer as when the nitrogen had dispersed no environmental impact would be left.
But depending on how a gardener views these results and what they need a mixed first place can be discussed, for environmentally friendliness the Urea and Nitrophoska are the clear winners with best dispersion rates and impact on the soil, for water ratings the Osmocote Nitrophoska are also winners as not every gardener has the time to water their plants so to not water the plants for one day is still good as the crop won’t die due to the components packed into these fertilizers, consistent growth is another factor that may be looked upon by gardeners as they would like all their plants to grow instead of half the crop, the control was used to show how the fertilizers really affected the growth and to show how a plant would really cope without fertilizers, the crop was low and the acid levels were really high due to the plant leaching in all the nutrients from the ground, this might also be another thing that a gardener might want to see a more balanced acidic level.
Other factors that need to be considered is the sun and its impacts on the plants, should I have done a test of plants planted in the soil rather than in pots, would the test have been different, the answer, maybe yes, but it wouldn’t have been fair as one plant might receive more of something then the test next to it, if the pots were isolated chances of the test not being fair or biased would be decreased.
Other factor such as the amount of seeds sprouting has to be taken into figure as well, what if I did more than one test of the same fertilizer to take into effect the sprout rate, the first test might have a sprout rate of 70% for Nitrophoska but the second might have 80% maybe even 60% or less, these issues have to be taken into effect as they might change the overall results of the test. A fertilizer may not be perfect or the best for a specific plant but it will help benefit its growth, to make a test worthwhile and a fact more than one test has to be done, it has to be experiment with more than 100 times to make sure as only one simple mistake can make or give a very different or altered outcome, but my test shows that Osmocote was the best fertilizer in most of the fields tested so it is placed as the best fertilizer in the growth test.
Conclusion- As predicted and the trends in the data support the theory in my hypothesis that Osmocote proved to be the best as it had all the major components of healthy growth as mentioned and it also had a wetting agent which was beneficial to its lead in the testing done. It was found that all the essential components for healthy plant growth were all beneficial to plant growth and that Osmocote the fertilizer with all these materials proved to be the best fertilizer with the biggest and healthiest growth of all the tests, it not only proved to be the best with the fastest growing or the biggest in height it also proved to be one of the best for water absorption and a balance in the acidity levels.