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In this experiment, the effect of the amount of MiracleGro liquid fertilizer on the
growth of Bacillariophyta algae from the Patapsco Park in grams was measured. Algae
was taken and split evenly into 30 different cups. 10 cups were labeled 0 ml. of fertilizer.
This made up the control group. 10 cups of algae received 2 mL. of fertilizer and were
labeled accordingly. This made up another group. 10 cups received 15 mL. of fertilizer
and were also labeled accordingly. This made up the final group. All trials were covered
in aluminum foil and had 5 holes poked through them. All cups were measured in grams,
and the 7 original grams of algae was deducted. The measurements were calculated and
put off to the side. The trials were measured every other day and the “extra amounts”
were deducted. It was hypothesized that if 15 mL. of fertilizer was added to the
freshwater algae, then algae growth will increase by 800 grams in 16 days, as opposed to
algae with 2 mL. of added fertilizer growing 200 grams in 16 days, because fertilizer
provides many needed nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium oxide.
However, the maximum growth was 19 grams in 16 days for one of the ten trials in the
group with 15 mL. of added fertilizer. The minimum was -1 grams of growth, which was
the total growth of a trial in the group with no added fertilizer, or the control group. The
average growth of all three trials was .8 grams for the control group, 3.3 grams for the
group with 2 mL. of added fertilizer, and 9.4 grams of average growth for the group with
15 mL. of added fertilizer. The data is not statistically significant because the true value
ranges overlap, however. Every group overlapped and the total true value range was from
-1.3 grams to 17.9 grams. Future experiments should calculate water temperature and
leave the water at a constant 35 degrees. Also, the environment should stay consistent and
algae should not be exposed to too much light.