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Applied Mathematics Science Fair Project

Uncovering Hidden Math in Nature

Uncovering Hidden Math in Nature | Science Fair Projects | STEM Projects
Nature is full of mathematical relationships that are often hidden from plain sight. In this project, we will explore the number of flower petals, leaf arrangement, spirals in plants, and shell shapes to uncover the hidden math in nature.


The hypothesis is that there are mathematical relationships in nature.

Method & Materials

You will conduct four experiments to find mathematical relationships: counting the number of flower petals and vegetable leaves, measuring the angle of each successive leaf, looking for spirals in plants, and observing shell shapes.
You will need iceberg lettuce, flowering kale, succulents, cauliflowers, a pinecone, a sunflower, a pineapple, and four kinds of shells.


The results of this project showed that there are mathematical relationships in nature. Flower petals and vegetables with leaves had relationships with Fibonacci numbers, and all the angles on the successive leaves were from 137-140 degrees, the Golden Angle. Spirals in plants were found to have consecutive Fibonacci numbers in the spirals going clockwise and counter clockwise. Shells were found to be formed in an equiangular and similar manner.

Why do this project?

This science project is so interesting and unique because it shows how mathematics is hidden in nature and how it can be used to explain the patterns and relationships in nature.

Also Consider

Experiment variations to consider include looking for mathematical relationships in the shapes of clouds, the number of spots on animals, and the number of stripes on animals.

Full project details

You can find additional information and details for this science fair project here. Have fun exploring!
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