Usefulness of Irrigation

Gloria T. Bond Coles School
8441 S. Yates Ave.
Chicago IL 60617
(312) 535-5669

Objective: To show that water is necessary for plant growth. To show how a dam can turn a nearly useless water way into a valuable form of irrigation. Materials: Lima beans Lima beans Dry soil Soil Paper cups Paper cups Water Dam 2 plastic straws Plywood 36 x 30 pail 2 catch pans 2 flexible tubes Procedure: Attempt to grow the lima beans in very dry soil. After 7 days, plant some more lima beans in very rich soil and water regularly. Compare the beans in size and growth development. Keep a growth chart. To construct the dam, cut pieces of 1/4 inch plywood according to following dimensions; front piece 36 inches long, 6 inches high, 6 inches wide, cut 2 angles 9 inches from each end and 2 inches above the base. To construct the back piece, cut 36 inches long, 12 inches high, 12 inches wide, 2 angles 8 inches from each end and 8 inches above base. Cut 2 side pieces, 30 inches long, 12 inches high slanting from 12 inches to 6 inches. Cut 4 top pieces, 33 inches long and 10 inches wide. Nail the front, back and sides together. Caulk joints. Cut triangle piece for dam. Drill 2 holes in the triangular piece same size as straws. With a straight pin, punch holes along one side of each of the two straws. Plug one end of each straw. Push the other end through the dam. Set a pail of water on a platform behind the model. Put the 2 flexible tubes in the pail and let water run slowly into the troughs. Water will flow right out of the trough without a dam. A lake will form behind the dam and the irrigation pipes will take water to dry areas for watering of the soil. Conclusion: Plants must have water in order to grow. Through irrigation pipes, water can be directed to dry areas where it is needed as long as there is a source of water such as a dam.
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