Phytoremediation is a form of bioremediation. Some plants are better at cleaning up soils and/or water than others. In this lab please use any seeds that germinate and grow fast, making them suitable for a lab in a short timeframe. Some plants are better at photoremediation than others, but for this lab you can use anything. From my experience sunflowers grow pretty fast and grass seed took several weeks to germinate. Seeing others plants that they chose, there was a variety such as snap peas, garden beans, pinto beans, corn, green onions, marigolds, wheat, and more.
The point of this assignment is to determine what happens to plants growing with some general contaminants. This is a qualitative lab because each person will be choosing different seeds, different containers, and different contaminants.
Seeds, such as wheat seeds or grass or beans or flowers that will grow quickly. If they are wheat seeds you will need 10 per pot. If other seeds, you will have to make that judgement.
15 containers for seed, such as paper cups, plastic cups, or small clay pots. Â Make a cut for drainage, if needed.
A tray to contain your pots is optional but recommended. I use a box.
• Access to sunlight.
• Marker for labeling
3 common contaminants, such as table or rock salt, isopropyl alchohol, hand cleaner with triclosan, automatic dishwashing detergent with phosphorus, motor oil, deicer, degreaser, or any other readily available household contaminants.
Prepare your 15 similar containers with soil. Ensure you have small openings at bottom of containers for drainage. Plant 10 wheat (or other) seeds in each container.
Label your containers with A-Control, A1, A2, A3, A4, B-Control, B1, B2, B3, B4, C-Control, C1, C2, C3, and C4. Obviously you have 3 controls, but to stay with the scientific method, each group of containers would have its own control.
After your plants have sprouted and are growing well: Add no contaminants to your control. Add a small measured amount of Contaminant A to A1, A2, A3, and A4. You can choose a slight amount of contaminant to add to A1, and increase the contaminant slightly for each A2, slightly more for A3, and slightly more for A4. Similarly, add Contaminant B to containers B1, B2, B3, B4, and add Contaminant C to containers C1, C2, C3, and C4.
Be sure to record what you planted and what contaminant and how much contaminant was added to each container.
Take notes and take at least one photo per week with your name and date for 4 weeks in each photo.
This is your formal paper. Your lab report which will be in APA style should consist of:
• Introduction with hypothesis, and answer to the following:
• Please name an environmental law and describe how it pertains to this topic. Also, discuss the role of government, a private entity such as a consultant, or an environmental advocacy group.
• Materials and methods
• Results and photos and a table or graph
• At least 2 references from the School library with the library URL. For example, and it is okay to use this is you mention page numbers used:
Golubev, I. A. (2011).Â Handbook of Phytoremediation. New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc. Retrieved from
*** Use the 3 pdfs attached with the name of “Reference requirement use” in context other than your other supportive references. These attachments are from the school library so that requirement will be checked off once used.
**** I will be attaching my data (Materials used, methods, progress photographs) from my lab experiment to plug in to your report.
Introduction including background from two school library citations. Intro also states hypothesis. Intro list one environmental law related to the project gives and example of a role from government, private group such as an industry or consultant, or an environmental advocacy entity. 2 point
Materials and methods. 1 point
Results. Photos with your name and date in photos and table or graph. 2.5 points The photos are important so that each student can prove they completed the lab.
Discussion. 1 points
Conclusions. 0.5 point
Two APA references from the school library. 2 points
Total 9 points.
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