The Effects Of Calcium Chloride On Lima Bean Growth

3562 words - 14 pages

The Effect of Calcium Chloride on the Growth of Lima Beans (Phaseolus lunatus)AbstractThis experiment examines the effects of CaCl2 on Lima beans. CaCl2, is a soluble salt used as a deicing agent. Water carries the dissolved CaCl2 ions into the ground water where plants can absorb them, and possibly affecting their growth. In this study, 50 lima beans were grown under lamps and were watered with 0.00-0.08 M CaCl2 to address toxicity. Each plant was watered with 20 mL/day of their assigned solution for 30 days. The pots were rotated regularly to ensure that each Lima bean received equal light. The Lima bean sprouts were measured daily from the pot bottom to the tallest leaf or bud. The sprouting ratio, longevity, and mean sprouting time were also calculated. No lima beans watered with 0.08 M CaCl2 solution sprouted, and at 0.04 M CaCl2, 50% of the bean sprouts started to die soon after sprouting. CaCl2 in concentration > 0.04 M will kill Lima beans. In Trial 2, the CaCl2 concentrations were reduced to 0.00-0.04 M. After three weeks, the plants grew more when exposed to a smaller concentration of calcium chloride. Any solution with CaCl2 ≥ 0.02 M inhibits growth. In Trial 3 the same trial 2 method was repeated and similar results were shown.IntroductionCalcium Chloride (CaCl2)During the winter, the ground gets icy, causing accidents. Due to the environmental problems associated with NaCl use, many people and municipaliaties now use CaCl2 to melt the ice. CaCl2 is seemingly more effective at melting at lower temperatures than NaCl. CaCl2, a white crystalline salt, dissolves easily in water, as the salt separates into Ca2+ and Cl-. When the ice melts, the dissolved calcium and chloride ions will runoff with the water into the soil. When CaCl2 is spread on the streets or sidewalks CaCl2 also can fall on soil or plants. Either way, the CaCl2 will accumulate in the soil, increasing the soil's salinity. This will affect the plants growing in that soil next season, especially if those plants are not salt-tolerant. The chloride ion concentration may rise to levels toxic to some plants (Jaleel et al., 2008). The increased salinity decreases the osmotic potential of soil solutes, which in turn, will reduce nutrient availability for the plant, making it harder for plants roots to absorb the water and dissolved ions from the surrounding soil that they need for growth (Jaleel et al., 2008). Calcium is a secondary macronutrient for plants. It improves cell wall structure and strength and prevents senescence. Calcium accumulates in plant cell walls and cell membranes and in areas where anti-senescence action occurs (Chéour et al., 1990). Calcium also helps regulate fruit ripening, vegetable maturation, protein and chlorophyll production, and the plant's respiration rate. Applying calcium chloride to strawberry leaves 3-5 days before harvesting helps to increase the calcium content in strawberries and to delay their ripening. It also helps prevent or...

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