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Comparing Fertilizers. Hania Koziol and Emma Marchetti Advanced Chemistry with Mr. Spangler. Introduction. 1st Study Research Question: Which of the two dilutions of water mixed with digestate (1:1 or 1:4) will have a more beneficial or negative effect on plant growth? Hypothesis:

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comparing fertilizers

Comparing Fertilizers

Hania Koziol and Emma Marchetti

Advanced Chemistry withMr. Spangler

  • 1st Study
    • Research Question:
      • Which of the two dilutions of water mixed with digestate (1:1 or 1:4) will have a more beneficial or negative effect on plant growth?
    • Hypothesis:
      • If the Wheat berries are soaked/watered with 1:1 dilution of digestate then there will be better plant growth.
  • 2nd Study
    • Research Questions:
      • Will Wheatgrass grow better in store-bought soil or natural soil (fines)?
      • What are the differences between generic brand (Vigoro) fertilizer and Algae Aqua's fertilizer (Digestate)
    • Hypothesis:
      • If Wheatgrass is grown in fines and watered with digestate then there will be better plant growth.

Algae Aquaculture Technology

-AACT has integrated bio processors that consume waste, heat, and carbon dioxide to produce renewable energy and organic soil amendments.

-Our study would be beneficial to their company

    • Ex. If we had different results than the study they conducted, it would be useful for them to know
  • We took their idea and expanded into our own study
    • Testing store-bought fertilizer and soil compared to theirs
bioreactors and raceways
Bioreactors and Raceways

Algae Raceways


  • We conducted two separate studies
    • Independent Variables: Varying the Digestate to water ratio
      • 1 part digestate: 1 part water and 1 part digestate to 4 parts water
    • Independent Variables: Comparing soil vs fines
      • For each: 1:1 and 1:4 ratio, full and half vigoro, and control
      • Controlled Variables: water (50 ml), & sunlight
      • Dependent variable: Plant growth. We measured plant height each time we watered
growing techniques
Growing Techniques
  • We used natural light bulbs with closer wavelengths to natural light than the average light bulb
  • Wheatberries must be soaked overnight for maximum sprouting and growing

Our Workspace


Initial Setup With Fines

Digestate Dilutions

Wheatberries Soaking

pictures of 1st study1
Pictures of 1st Study



Final Product: Day 8

conclusions of 1st study
Conclusions of 1st Study

-1:1 had higher average of growth except for two days (6 and 7) but that could have just been a measuring error.

-Overall we conclude that 1:1 dilution had higher average growth and therefore is a better dilution of digestate:water proving our hypothesis correct.

conclusions of 2nd study
Conclusions of 2nd Study

-From the data we found that the Control grown in soil seemed to grow the best out of all samples.

- Digestate grew better than Vigoro in Fines but Vigoro had higher height averages in store bought soil.


-Could have done another study to have more results for more accurate conclusions

-We made a mistake... instead of only soaking seeds in Algae Digestate, we soaked and watered plants. By only soaking we would have saved a lot of digestate and maybe would have had different results, although it didn't seem to have too much effect as long as it was kept constant

-Our data could have been collected more accurately, busy schedules interfered greatly.

solar testing at aact
Solar Testing at AACT

-Concluded that at AACT there was a 50% difference in the light intensity outdoors vs. indoors (outdoors being 50% higher)

-Used a light intensity meter


"Algae AquaCulture Technology." Algae AquaCulture Technology. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2013. <>.

Bergonzi, Michael. "How To Grow Wheatgrass." How to Grow Wheatgrass. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2013. <>.

"GE Lighting Global | Lighting Solutions | GE Lighting." GE Lighting. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2013. <>.