C-Fern Germination Essay

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Effect of ammonium nitrate on Ceratopteris richardii Abstract: Ceratopteris richardii, also known as C-fern, is commonly used in research studies as a model plant because of its short generation time. In this experiment, we aimed to observe the effects of ammonium nitrate on this species of ferns. To achieve this, we inoculated and evenly spread three drops of C. richardii spores into two separate and sterile petri dishes, one control group and one experimental group. The experimental treatment contained 1% ammonium nitrate on the medium and the control treatment was merely a normal nutrient-rich agar. Then, we performed an f-test and a t-test to determine if there was any germination difference between the treatments. We hypothesized that ammonium nitrate would promote spore germination because past research on Botrychium dissectum revealed that the presence of ammonium on the medium had a positive effect on spore germination (Melan & Whittier 1990). However, in our experiment, the highest germination was observed on the media lacking ammonium nitrate. We calculated a spore germination mean value of 115.83 on the control group compared to 56.33 on the experimental group. We concluded that ammonium nitrate inhibits C. richardii spore germination. Introduction Ferns can be found almost anywhere in the world, making them a major part of our ecosystem. There are over 10,000 species of ferns and they predominantly inhabit tropical areas (Brooker et. al. 2014). Because of their beauty, they are commonly used as ornamental plants. In addition, some species of aquatic ferns, Azolla for example, are commonly used in Southeast Asia to fertilize rice fields and as a food source for livestock (Arora & Singh 2003). Ferns also play an important role in many cultures around the globe. In some societies, they are used medicinally to treat a wide variety of

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