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GROW PLANTS IN DIFFERENT HEAT CONDITIONS

Let's see how warm plants like to be. We have three pots
with potting soil, and some seeds. We can use about any kind
of seeds we want, just so they are all the same, and we
should plant two or three seeds in each pot. Of course, we
will label the pots, and the labels will tell what kind of
seeds, the date we planted them, and what conditions of heat
they will have. ("Hot," "Cold," and "Normal.")

The "Normal" pot will be placed on the counter near the
window. We can put the "Cold" pot into the refrigerator, or
we can put it onto some dry ice. (It would be too difficult
to keep one in regular ice cubes, because they melt, and we
would just have to drain off the water and put in fresh
cubes.) The "Hot" pot will be put very near the heater. If
we do this experiment at the time of year when we aren't
using the heater, we'll get a lamp to put by the plant, or
even a heating pad, if we make sure the pad doesn't get water
on it.

Do you know what a thermometer (pronounced "ther-mom-it-ter")
is? It is an instrument that measures heat and cold. Some-
times when you get sick, your mom or the doctor will take
your temperature (pronounced "tem-per-a-tyoor") with a
thermometer, to see if you have a fever. Sometimes when you
come into the house from outside and you are shivering, you
might say, "Wow! How cold is it out there?" Mom could look
out the window at the thermometer, and say, "It is really
cold! It's only 28 degrees." There are many different kinds
of thermometers, for several purposes.

We have three thermometers here and we'll put one onto the
soil in each pot. On our lists, we will copy the labels of
the pots, and beside each label, we will write the tempera-
ture of each pot.

When the soil in the pot labeled "Normal" gets dry on top, we
will water all three plants, using the same amount of water
for each one. We'll make a note of the dates we see green on
each pot, and as they grow, we will measure them. Then, we
can decide if plants like to be hot, cold, or normal.

We can do the same experiment in soilless gardens, to see how
heat and cold affects germination and root growth. I think
the soilless garden made with jars and paper towels would be
best.

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