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EXPERIMENT TO TEST HYPOTHESIS THAT FERTILIZER EFFECTS COFFEE BEAN GROWTH

Dr. Jacqueline McLaughlin, PhD.
Biology 110 section 001
September 6, 1996

Purpose:

We have made the observation that not all coffee bean plants mature identically. After conducting some background literature, we have come up with the following hypothesis: Nutrient resources in fertilizers are essential to coffee bean growth, lack of fertilizer retards growth.

Materials:

20 coffee bean seeds, soil from a constant source, fertilizer with a known amount of nitrogen and phosphorus, pots to plant the seeds, a constant UV light source.

Methods:

1.There will be two groups of seeds with 10 plants each: a) the seeds which have fertilizer (independent variable); and b) the seeds which do not have fertilizer (control group).

2. Plant all seeds in 30 cm diameter pots with soil. The fertilizer treatment will receive 10 grams of fertilizer.

3. At the end of the growing season, the number of beans(dependent variable)of each plant will be recorded.

Control:

The plants will have natural (no fertilizer) soil conditions.

Data Interpretation:

A histogram will be used to plot the results. The average number of beans for each group of plants will be plotted on the Y axis (ordinate) and the treatment group will be plotted on the X axis (abscissa). A t-test can also be performed to determine if the treatment group differs from the control group. If the treatment group produces more seeds than the control, we can then conclude that the treatment of fertilizer had an effect and the resource in question is limited to plants. This will obviously lead to more questions and hypotheses.

References:

Morgan, I.G. and Brown Carter, M.E., Investigating Biology: A Laboratory Manual for Biology. California: Benjamin/Cummings Publishing Co., Inc. 1993.



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