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Garden with Insight Kurtz-Fernhout Software
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Garden with Insight v1.0 Help: Experimenting

The number of experiments you can devise with Garden with Insight is unlimited. Some possible experiments could include:

Risk analysis on plant growth based on weather variation. This would entail growing plants over several years with reseeding each year, and graphing and comparing dates of maturity and yield. Using the xy graph, students could compare variability in growth and assign a risk of crop failure to climate-cultivar pairs.

Analysis of the long-term affects of different types of soil amendment. For example, one could apply only mineral fertilizer to one soil patch, only organic fertilizer to another, and only liquid fertilizer to a third, and compare nutrient cycling and plant growth and yield over time between the soil patches.

Comparison of the biomass allocation strategies of some common garden plants. For example, what different growth patterns are found in plants that produce large roots versus plants that put their energy into fruit production? How do they respond differently to environmental cues? Could you create a cultivar that puts its energy into both roots and fruits? What tradeoffs would have to be made? What would be the result in harvested food?

Analysis of how weather patterns can be simulated. What are autocorrelation matrices? Why are they useful for generating simulated weather? What features of the real weather are most difficult to simulate? Why? How do weather patterns differ between areas in the United States? How can these differences best be explained?

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Updated: March 10, 1999. Questions/comments on site to
Copyright © 1998, 1999 Paul D. Fernhout & Cynthia F. Kurtz.