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Soil fertility and antsFeatured science projectScience project video

Conclusion

The hypothesis that the presence of ants in the soil will help  plants to grow faster is proven to be true.

Ants help to fertilize the soil in many ways. They help in the recycling of decomposed materials. Some of the ants eat the other insects and caterpillars that are harmful to the plants and will help nourish the soil with their processed food. Ants also keep wasps away. Their burrowing activity helps air and water get to the plants’ roots faster. The ants also help in spreading the plants’ seeds.

Also consider

What would happen if the experiment was repeated using more ants?

The experiment can be repeated using earthworms instead of ants. I would also consider repeating the experiment with a variety of other plants, or perhaps more plants, to obtain more accurate/reliable results.

References

Soils life - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soil_life

Effect of ants and earthworm on soil habitat modification - http://www.jstor.org/pss/20112621

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Complexity level:
6
Project cost ($):
15
Time required:
1 hour to prepare, 10 days for observation
Material availability:
Ants may be found in parks/gardens. Radish seeds may be purchased at a gardening supplies store/supermarket.
Safety concerns:

Be careful when handling the ants. They bite! Wear protective gloves. Adult supervision recommended.