Sunday, November 11, 2012

Theories of Disintegration: Plant Decomposition

Sadly, our seed babies did not survive, but as many of the students had moved on to thinking more deeply about plant decomposition - what happens after the seed sprouts, flowers, and dies - this allowed us to examine what happened more closely.

Our poor little seed babies
What do you think happened to the seeds and the sprouts?
Many children noticed that there was a sort of "white fluff" on some of the plants:  "it's like a disease."  Others advanced the theory that perhaps the roots got disconnected from the seed, while others suggested that while the plants were outside getting some sunshine, bugs had played a role in the plants' demiseL.  thought perhaps too much water had evaporated from the plants, and K. thought that the sprouts that had flourished "got too tall. They got too delicate and then they dropped over." 
 A very droopy seedling...

We decided to take them outside to see what was going on in the soil. As we pulled the seedlings out of the dirt, we noticed that the roots were not disconnected at all...in fact, some of the root systems were quite surprisingly long.  






L's seedling's root system was the longest of all!

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