The Influence of Plant Hormones on Pod and Seed Growth and Biochemical Composition in Green Bean Plants
Burnaby South Secondary
Floor Location : M 185 V
Plant hormones are organic chemicals synthesized by plants and are vital in the coordinated regulation of plant growth and development. My experiment focuses on the effect of single and multiple plant hormone treatments on both the reproductive and vegetative growth as well as the nutrient levels in seeds of green bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) plants. The experiment consisted of seven treatment groups each being treated with a hormone or combination of hormones from the following major plant hormones: Auxins (naptheleneacetic acid or NAA), Cytokinins (benzylaminopurine or BAP) and Gibberellic acid (GA). I measured both vegetative growth (stem height, average leaf number and chlorophyll levels) along with reproductive growth (pod length, pod weight, seed number) in green bean plants in my experiment. In order to determine the nutritional quality, I analyzed the protein profiles and starch levels in seeds of green bean plants. I took short and long term measurements of the plants after recording initial data.The results of my experiments showed that gibberellic acid (GA) alone or in combination with NAA and BAP induced the highest increase in stem height growth as well as the average number of leaves in both the short-term and long-term. Secondly, BAP plus NAA induced the highest chlorophyll levels in the short term. Thirdly, a mixture of cytokinin (BAP) and auxin (NAA) was also found as the most effective treatment in increasing both the growth of pods and the average number of seeds per pod. Fourthly, GA (alone or in combination with NAA and BAP) enhanced the levels of three major storage proteins in bean seeds; Phaseolin, Legumin, and Phytohemagglutinin. Finally, I found that BAP plus NAA substantially increased the level of starch in bean seeds. Overall, my results indicate that plant hormones may have a significant role in enhancing the plant growth, seed yield, and improving the nutritional quality in green bean plants. In the future I would like to research the feasibility of using the plant breeding and genetic techniques in order to enhance the crop production and nutritional quality in green beans and other major crop plants.