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Sea water and its effects on Bambusa vulgaris (common bamboo)Featured science projectScience project video


This experiment was performed to ascertain if watering Bambusa vulgaris (common bamboo) plants with sea water will cause them to grow faster, slower or wilt. Sea water is sometimes used to put out forest fires. The result of this experiment will help us understand the long term effects of using sea water to put out tropical forest fires.


 Watering bamboo plants with sea water will cause their growth to be stunted or will cause the plants to wilt and die.

Scientific Terms

Osmosis, partially-permeable membrane, Bamboo, Bambuseae


Bambusa vulgaris (common bamboo)

The bamboo plant is known to be very fast growing, as quickly as several inches a day. This plant can achieve its full height in 4 months. This characteristic of the bamboo plant makes bamboo suitable for this experiment. It helps enable us to measure the effect of salt water on ithe growth of bamboo over a short period of time.


Osmosis is the movement/diffusion of water through a partially-permeable membrane from a solution of low concentration to a solution of higher concentration. In this experiment, the"membrane" is in fact the outer layer of the roots of the bamboo plants, as the sea water is absorbed through the roots via the process of osmosis. The high solution concentration consists of sea water and the liquid inside the roots is of lower concentration.

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Time required:
1 day to prepare, 5 days for observation
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Easily found
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