2. Methods

Equipment list:

Equipment Required
Quantity / Remarks
LED Light Strips
Red, Blue, Yellow, Green
$4 for each strip,

total: $16
Plants of different coloured leaves
3 young plants of each colour

Green leaves : Mung Green Bean Plant
Red Leaves : Fittonia
Purple leaves : Syngonium
$0 - Green
$15 - Red
$75 - Purple

Total -$90
45, 15 each type
PINGLA 56x37x36 cm boxes
To place plants in (each box will be for each colour of light )
4 (4 colours of light)

For the plant
To allow the plant to grow and absorb minerals
2 packs


To contain the plants
BOMEX Beaker (250ml)
To contain 250ml of water needed for watering the plants
25ml Syringe
To ensure even amount of water provided for each pot of plant
Dark Tape
To ensure that there are no holes in box itself and to seal any open holes for any source of light to enter the box.


Total money needed: $130.95

Types of plants we are using
1)Green Beans
Fig. 1: Mung Green Beans, Source:  My Green Thumb, 23rd DECEMBER  2010

Light requirements: Any light intensity is fine
Water requirements: Should be watered to provide preliminary moisture for the plants
Soil requirements: Place in a light, well-drained compost. Susceptible to rot, so water only when completely dry.

2) Fittonia
Fig. 2: Fittonia, Source: Frog Forum, 19th July  2014

Light requirements: Indirect Sunlight
Water requirements:  Plants should be kept constantly moist, with high ambient humidity. Mist frequently or grow in a tray with pebbles and water.
Soil requirements: Fittonia can be easily grown in conventional, peat-based potting soil. Make sure it can retain moisture, but will not remain soggy

3) Syngonium

Fig. 3: Purple Syngonium, Source: Flowermania forum by Silvia Ivanova, 14th September 2007

Light requirements: Bright light but no direct sun.
Water requirements: Spray frequently to maintain high humidity. Keep soil continuously moist throughout spring and summer, and reduce watering in the winter, but don't let it dry out.
Soil requirements: Rich, well-drained potting mix.

Fig. 4: All the plants for the testing, 6th August  2014


Our Set-up
The experiment was carried out in SST at the engineering lab. We conducted the experiment with a total of 45 plants. We had 4 cardboard boxes, each with a strip of light with the colours blue, red, green and yellow. 9 plants were placed in each box, 3 of each different plants, green bean, syngonium and fittonia. The last 9 plants (3 of each type), are placed out in the a sunlight as a control.
Fig. 5:  Set-up, Computer Sketch

Plant Set-up details

We have 3 batches of plants, Batch A, Batch B and Batch C. Each batch consist of:

5 Mung Green Bean plants (with green leaves) under the five different coloured light.
5 Syngonium plants (with purple leaves) under the five different coloured light.
5 Fittonia plants (with red leaves) under the five different coloured light.

Therefore, there are 3 plants for each plant type under each coloured light for more reliable result in the experiment, we will measure the height of  each plants, then take the average of the 3 plants of the same species to ensure that the measurements collected will be reliable.

Procedures: Detail all procedures and experimental data collection

1. Measure the height of the plants and the number of leaves of each plant. We will also take a picture of each plant. (the pictures will be used for comparison at the end of the experiment and for the video)

2. Destarch the red and purple young plants by putting in a dark cupboard for 48 hours. (Green beans did not need to be destarched because they were still in the germination stage and do not have leaves yet, so they are unable to photosynthesize)

3. While the plants are being destarched, we will make the setup as shown in fig.5. We will set up the cardboard boxes and attach the LED strips in a straight formation to the top of the cover. We will also cover the interior of the boxes completely with black paper to ensure that the light is absorbed and not being reflected by the brown coloured interior of the box onto the plants as the plants will receive different amounts of light, causing the experiment to be unfair.

4. After placing them in the setup, we will take out the plant to record the height and take a picture of each plant every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday (the pictures will be used for comparison at the end of the experiment).
We will water the plants with sufficient amount of water too (5ml each plant).

5. After experiment is over, we make tables and histograms to record data.

Risk Assessment and Management

Risk and Safety:

Safety Precautions:
Water and electricity
Electric shock
Wear rubber gloves at all times and make sure that no water is present near /in contact with the power sockets as it might cause electrocution.
Bacteria in soil
Wear gloves whenever we are handling soil and always wash hands after we are done handling the setup.
The cardboard catches fire from the light strip
Have a fire extinguisher in the room that is still working and make sure it is reachable.
Mishandling sharp and dangerous items e.g. scissors
Be more wary of how it is used and how to carry to prevent the harm of ourselves and others.

Data Analysis

When the experiment is completed:

  1. We are to record the growth of the 3 types of plants (with different types of leaves) growing under different types of light. We will use recordings and pictures collected every 2 days as data collection for our discussion.

  1. We will record the average height of each plants on tables. There will be three tables, one for each batch of plants, and we would divide the tables with the type of plant and which colour of light the plants were placed in.

  1. We will also check the condition of the plants and how it is doing by checking the leaf of the plant and to find out if it is healthy or it is dying.

  1. We compare the tables for each plant together with the colour of light for easier reference and as the final data.

Tables and graphs that will be used

Fig. 6: Table for each type of plant growth under different coloured lights Screen Shot 2014-09-02 at 11.39.48 pm.png
Fig. 7: Computation of Average Growth of All 3 batches : Batch A, Batch B and Batch C

Fig. 8: Histogram to be used to compute the average of all 3 batches A,B and C

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