The Effects Of Hormones On Plant Growth

1894 words - 8 pages

Abstract:

        In two different types of pea plants, Dwarf pea plants and Wild Type pea plants, there is a distinct difference in size, Dwarf pea plants being the smaller of the two due to a missing growth gene in their makeup. I hypothesize that dwarf plants will grow at an increased rate when introduced to the growth hormone Giberellic acid which it lacks in its genome. I suggest the same for the wild type pea plants, but since they already have a growth hormone present in their genome the growth will not be as drastic as that of its miniature counterpart. The plants were then exposed to the growth hormone GA; one group of wild type pea plants and one group of dwarf pea plants received portions of the hormone while two similar separate groups acted as controls and only received a lanolin solution lacking such a hormone. The growth rate after seven days was increased rapidly within the GA treated Dwarf plants while the growth rate of the wild type(normal) GA treated plants was only minimally increased. This supports the hypothesis that Dwarf pea plants would grow more rapidly when introduced to a growth hormone they initially lacked than the "normal" pea plants who already had the hormone to begin with.

Introduction:

        Plant growth occurs naturally in the environment due to several characteristics every plant contains. Each plant, whether an angiosperm or gymnosperm, green or red, has one goal; creating as much energy it needs to survive. In the average pea plant this goal is achieved primarily through its ability to grow as tall as possible in order to compete for its one main energy source, the sun. Within the pea plant there lies a naturally occurring hormone, Giberellic Acid, which aids the growth process. The changes a plant undergoes as it grows toward its food source and the role of a hormone on that growth was the prominent question instigating the forthcoming experiment.

        Ten wild type (normal) and ten dwarf (containing a single gene mutation) pea plants were analyzed. These were separated into two separate sets of five dwarf and five wild type plants, one set being the control group, while the other the experimental. A sample of Giberellic Acid was placed on the shoot apex, where primary growth in a plant occurs, of each "experimental" plant. This Giberellic acid solution contained the substance lanolin which should have no effect on the growth of the plant, but as a precaution to make sure our results are perfectly accurate, a sample of pure lanolin was added to the shoot apex of those plants within the "control" group. The height of the plants was then measured and recorded so as to compare them with the heights in one week's time.

        A distinct difference in size between the growth of the "control" dwarf pea plants and the "experimental" dwarfs is expected. The dwarfs lack the gene that produces a sufficient amount of growth hormone, thus resulting in their...

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