The Effect of Varying Concentrations of Aqueous Sodium Silicate on the Growth of Corn

Shirae, Derek
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University of Hawaii at Manoa
The research was divided up into three experiences each dealing with a particular aspect of the effect of sodium silicate on the growth of corn. In the first experiment, sodium silicate affected the growth rates of corn and radish, and sodium carbonate affected the growth rates of corn, radish, and bean seedlings. From this initial experiment, the mechanism by which sodium silicate was determined to not be specific to any particular plant, and also since sodium carbonate had similar effects, it was determined that the chemical role silicate plays as an oxyanion (like caronate and germanate) was probably important. In the second experient, the growth of corn seedlings was gound to depend on the concentration of silicate, and perhaps indirectly (as a result of silicate-water interaction) on the pH of the solution. In the third experiement, there were significant growth differences among corn seedlings grown in varying concentrations of silicate with varying concentrations of NaCl, which was the stress factor.
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