Acid Rain Theory

Problem Scenario

Broad Question

How does acidity effect grass growth?

Specific Question

Will smaller or larger amounts of acid rain effect the growth of rye grass?


I predict that smaller amounts of acid will cause the grass to slow down its growth rate, while the larger amounts will cause the grass to slow its growth even further.

Graph of Hypothesis


Independent Variable:

Grass growth

Dependent Variable:

Acid amounts

Variables That Need To Be Controlled:

The amount of acid that the plant is introduces to.

Vocabulary List That Needs Explanation

Rye Grass: The plant that will be used in the experiment
Acid Rain: The theory that in a nuclear fall out the rain in the atmosphere would turn to acid causing all of the plants to die.

General Plan

I plan on planting the rye grass seeds in individual containers and marking them (10 ml controlled) and (20 ml controlled). Then i will keep them under a heat lamp and water them with plain water. Then twice a week I will water them with the controlled amounts of acid. I will then measure their growth over the course of four weeks. Once I've measured the two plants and the experiment is over the data will be compared and put into a graph.

Potential Problems And Solutions

There is a possibility that the acid will just kill the plants off and the experiment will fail. But if that happens the experiment will be continued because that would also provide a better understanding on the theory.

Safety Or Environmental Concerns

The only thing i'm concerned about is the acid spilling everywhere. It wont really cause a health threat but it would still be a concern.
The other thing I am concerned about is if the plants do not grow then I will not be able to do the experiment. That will cause the entire thing to backfire and I won't have any data.

Experimental Design

(add the correct headings from the experimental design page before beginning)

Controlled, manipulated experiment

What is your experimental unit?

One Container.

Number Of Trials:

There will be eight trials.

Number Of subjects for each trial.

Number of subjects in each trial.

Number of Observations:

One per subject per day

When data will be collected

Over the course of four weeks.

Where will data be collected?:

In my science journal then it will be transfered to a google doc.

Resources and Budget Table

Number needed
Where I will get this
Rye Grass Seeds
16 seeds
Mr. Biche
Lemon Juice
1 pint
4 cups
4 cups of dirt

Detailed Procedure

1) I will get containers for the seeds to grow in.
2) I will water the plants every day except for Mondays and Fridays.
3) On Mondays and Fridays I will water the plants with Lemon Juice.
4) I will check their growth everyday over the course of four weeks.
5) Then when all of the data is collected I will turn it into a Google spreadsheet.
6) The spreadsheet will be turned into a graph then it will be printed and put onto the poster board.


Photo List

1) One of me being

Time Line

Data Table

Data Analysis

All Raw Data




Each of the plants grew significantly over the course of six days. The one that grew the most however was the one watered with 20ml of Lemon Juice. The one that grew the least is the one that grew in 20ml of water. Why this happened I do not know but my hypothesis is that there was too much water for the cup to hold. Therefore the plant was drowned. My hypothesis was correct and the plants were successful in proving that the earth can adapt to an acidic environmental.


My conclusion is that our world will be adaptable to an acidic environment. My data and graphs show that they actually grow better when watered with lemon juice. This part of New England with have decent growth and plant life if the world does come to a catastrophic end such as acid rain or a broken atmosphere. Most of North America would be in an okay condition if the rain turned acidic. New England is one of the only places that has a large mixture of different kinds of plants so the fact that they will adapt is a good thing.


Benefit to Community and/or Science

If there is an epidemic where acid rain happens, the knoledge of whether or not plants could addapt to the acid is a great furhter insight. It is also a benefit to know this because our community has a lot of plant life growing everywhere so if the plants could not addapt then our community would be in danger.

Background Research

The Acid Rain Theory: With the holes in the o-zone layer the world predicted that in the future the rain will turn acidic and kill off all the wild life. The plants will not have any water and the theory states that they will all die. Many do not believe that this will happen, but certain scientists believe that the chemicals that we put into the air each day will cause our downfall. We are not the only ones that would be effected by this disaster:Without plants there wouldn't be food, without food there would be no us. The first time this was hypothesized was in 1947 by Dr. Hoth who began to realize the theory of the world losing it's clean air. He began his studies in the big cities where he tested the air quality. Then he traveled to smaller towns in the U.S and compared the air samples. He concluded that the pollution in the cities was 3x the amount that the towns were making. And at that rate the worlds atmosphere would turn to ashes and toxic fumes.