Fast Plant Research Project
Effects of Gibberellic Acid on Development of Fast Plants
Plant growth is affected by a variety of factors. Internally, it is regulated by natural chemicals
By standard definition, as cited from Meriam-Webster’s Medical dictionary,
plant hormones are “an organic substance other than a nutrient that in minute amounts modifies
a plant physiological process, especially when active somewhere other than the site of
production”. Plant hormones,also called phytochromes, are responsible for the growth and
differentiation of the plant producing them. There are several different classes of phytochromes,
one of which is the gibberellins. This group of hormones is responsible for several
Gibberellins break the dormancy of a seed, stimulates cell elongation
and bolting and causes seedless fruit development (“Gibberelins”).
circumstances, the plant itself will synthesize the hormones necessary for regular plant growth.
A failure to do so will result in the absence of the physical phenomena induced by that hormone.
In order to investigate the effects of gibberellin on plants, a mutant strain of
(Wisconsin Fast Plants) lacking in the capacity to efficiently synthesize gibberellins
was obtained. This strain is deficient in height and will grow to express a rosette phenotype. In
order to determine the role of gibberellic acid, a gibberellin, on plant development, the acid was
topically administered to both a standard (2 cells, 2 plants each) and dwarf (rosette) (2 cells, 2
plants each) form of
and the results were then compared to a control, which, again,
consisted of two sets each phenotype, four plants each. All plants were planted in Styrofoam
cells equipped with a wick and placed on a water tray for self-watering. After allowing the
plants 7 days to germinate, they were checked regularly to record height and apply gibberellic
acid to the leaves of the experimental plant group.
We hypothesized that a regular application of gibberellic acid to dwarf plants would at least
partially restore its normal elongation function, allowing the dwarfs to exhibit growth patterns
akin to that of the control standard group, outgrowing the control dwarfs.
We also hypothesized that extra gibberellin, when applied to the experimental standard group,