Highest Absorption Rate of Nutrients And pH Levels By Plants
Mark Pan
Moscrop Secondary
Floor Location : J 205 V

This project mainly concerned the absorption rates of 5 distinct and varied plants (Carex Buchanni, Nassella Tenuissima, Festuca Glauca, Sagina Subulata, and Armeria Maritima) selected for their size and physical and anatomical appearance, to ultimately recognize which one of the five would absorb the most nutrients in comparison to the others. The nutrients are the following; phosphorus, potassium and we furthermore decided to chart the acidity/alkalinity of the water, and moreover measured the pH levels (we initially attempted nitrogen, albeit the test kit did not work properly for nitrogen). Our test kit determined the level of the nutrient/pH in the water via pouring test capsules and shaking rigorously; each type of nutrient had a specific color, and the darker the coloration of the water, the higher the nutrient; this howbeit differed for the pH level-high acidity was signified by red coloration, and it went from red all the to green, which signified high alkalinity (like a conventional pH chart).
Nevertheless, we are intrigued in the nutrient-absorbing abilities of plants*, and how marshes and wetlands act as natural water purifiers and clean polluted water clogged with fertilizers and industrial chemicals. Furthermore, I have seen tests and projects where they have used artificially-constructed marshes (artificial floating wetlands-or A.F.W.s) for the use of municipal waste water cleansers, and, if I must comment, the success rate is remarkably high. Thus, we have designed the experiment to somewhat mimic an A.F.W.; we have taken small portions of the plant and placed it onto a portion of mesh fabric in a way such that to roots can adequately reach the water.
We will therefore take tests of the water at specific intervals to evaluate the plants’ gradual performance; we have set intervals of 36 hours, 60 hours, 84 hours and 108 hours (the number of experimentations differ according to the nutrient, due to material restraints), thus increasing by 24 hours each test. By comparing the water color per each test, we can rank and place them according to darkness of the coloration of the water, and we would finally find a mean (an average) rank.
After assorting the placements, we have gathered the data, and compiled them into charts and graphs-which are mainly composed by taking the mean placement (ranking from 1-the most/darkest coloration-to 5-the least/lightest coloration); which is achieved by adding all the placement numbers of the plants per experimentation, and then dividing the sum by the number of experimentations.