Water the Plants! Add Sugar? Would Adding Sugar to the Water Increase the Growth of Plants?

Water the Plants! Add Sugar? Would Adding Sugar to the Water Increase the Growth of Plants?

To determine if adding sugar to the water would increase the growth of plants?

Questions for Background Research:

  • What gives green plants their green color?
  • How do green plants obtain their food?
  • What is photosynthesis?
  • What is chlorophyll?
  • Are all sugars the same?
  • How do plants store sugar?
  • What are some of the methods being used to increase plant growth?
  • What is a control in an experiment?
  • Of what value is a control in this experiment?

On the information level, this experiment serves to acquaint students with basic information on the basic processes of the growth of green plants. Plants produce their own food by the process known as photosynthesis. The word photo synthesis when broken down into its component syllables yields photo meaning light and synthesis meaning putting together and thereby informs us that plants require light in order to produce their own food. Plants trap the sunlight and produce carbohydrates (sugars and starches) which in turn are converted into energy. It would seem logical to assume that were we to add sugar such as glucose to the water which plants require , we would increase the growth of the plant . Logical, yes? Will it work? Let us find out!

This science fair experiment also serves to acquaint students with the essential processes of sciencing such as the importance of the use of a control, of identifying dependent and independent variables, of data collection, of pictorial and or graphic presentation of data and of being able to make better judgments as to the validity and reliability of their findings. They take on the role of scientists and in the process they learn to act as one.


  • six geranium plants of approximately the same size
  • sugar
  • water
  • a beaker
  • a graduated cylinder
  • a table spoon
  • a metric ruler
  • paper towels
  • a camera (if you wish to take photos of the procedure and the results).
  • These are all readily available from the local gardener, 

Sugar water vs. water plant growth.

Sugar water vs. water plant growth.

Sugar Water vs. water plant growth! By: Sierra Peyton Hypothesis If the plant has sugar water, then
it should grow better/faster than just water because plants use photo-synthesis to create their food. (photo-synthesis uses the sun to make sugar for food.)

How fast the palnts grow. controled variables.
1-the window where the plant was placed.
2-Who planted the seeds.
3-Who recorded.
4-Who measured the palnts.
5-Person who gave the plants water + sugar water.

1- take a pot and fill it with dirt to the brim.
2- Dig a whole in your dirt, and place 1 seed inside and cover back up with dirt.
3- Water the seed with 8mm of water.
 4- Fill your 2nd pot with dirt to the brim.
5- Dig a whole in the middle,and place another seed in it.
6_ Mix water and sugar to make sugar water. (4mm of water, 4mm of sugar)
7- Water your plant with 8mm of sugar water.
8- Put your pot by a window and water everyday for a week.
9- Measure the height of your plants daily for a week.
 Record on a data table.

  • (cm) 2 pots 
  • 2 plant seeds. (any kind) 
  • water 
  • (1cup) sugar. 
  • (1cup) dirt. 
  • 1/2 lb spoon. materials measuring tools.
  • (tablespoon) ruler.
  • (cm) window. paper + 
  • pencil. data table. someone to record. 

What is photosynthesis?
Photosynthesis is turning light (solar) energy into sugar.
Solar energy is using the sun to create energy. Plants use the sun to make photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is used in plants and some algae. Most photosynthesis happens in the leave and
not the stem.

Photosynthesis is:
6CO2+6H2O (+light energy) --> C6H12+6O2

Light reaction- Converts light energy to chemical energy. Chlorolplasts use chlorophyll to create photosynthesis. Plants take in CO2 (carbon dioxide) and give off oxygen. Chlorophyll absorbs sunlight and uses the energy from Co2+water. Chlorophyll is the green coloration in leaves.

Qualitative Data 
1- Plants were small and yellow looking.
2- The plants smelled like dirt.
3- Plants grew some.
4- Plants still smelled like dirt.
5- Plants started filling out.
6- Plants became more green.
7- Plants grew a couple cm.
8- Plants were very green.
9- Plants still smelled like dirt.

Analysis +
Interprtation of results During my procedure, some unusual things happened. The plants started to turn brown on the edges and didnt grow very fast. During the week, the plants werent growing very well in the winter. The sugar water plant grew taller (cm) overall. To using sugar water helps the plants grow faster because they are skipping the process. (making sugar) This also helps in the winter when there isnt much sun to make photosynthesis! One time during the week,  accidently put sugar water in the water plant.

1- Gave the plants too much/too little water.
2- The dog knocked a plant over.
3-  Gave the water plant sugar water, and the sugar water plant water.
4- Forgot to water the plants. Put the plant on a shelf! Use measuring tools.

To avoid these problems?!

The hypothesis:
The sugar water plant should grow better than the water plant because, plants use sugar to create photosynthesis.
(food) Sugar water is letting the plant skip that step. (the plant is 1 step ahead)
The hypothesis was correct. The sugar water plant overall grew 1.8215 cm taller than the water plant. Recommendations
 _ Do this procedure during the summer.
- Test many different kinds of plants.
- Plant the plants outside.
- See how long each plant lives.
- See which plant grows better overall.

How does sugar water affect the growth and development of a plant?

How does sugar water affect the growth and development of a plant?
Watering a plant with sugar water will usually harm it because it makes soil water less available to the plant. In technical terms, it lowers the water potential of the soil water by lowering the osmotic potential. Water flows from higher to lower water potential. The water potential in the plant must be lower
than the soil water potential in order for water to flow from the soil into the plant.

Plant roots are not adapted to absorb sugar. Plants make all the sugars they require via photosynthesis.

Plant water relations are discussed in college introductory botany texts, plant physiology texts or soil science texts.
Sugar water effect plants...

Effects of Sodium Chloride on Water Status and Growth of Sugar Beet

Effects of Sodium Chloride on Water Status and Growth of Sugar Beet
The effects of sodium chloride on the water status, growth, and physiology of sugar beet subjected to a range of soil water potentials were studied under controlled conditions. Sodium chloride increased plant dry weight and the area, thickness, and succulence of the leaves. It increased the water capacity of the plant, mainly the shoot, but there was no evidence that it altered the relationships between leaf relative water content and the leaf water, osmotic, and turgor potentials or changed the way stomatal conductance and photosynthesis responded to decreasing leaf water potential. The greater leaf expansion in sodium-treated plants is thought to be the consequence of adjustments made by leaf cells to accommodate changes in ions and water in a way that minimizes change in water and turgor potentials. It is also suggested that the greater water capacity of treated plants buffers them against deleterious changes in leaf relative water content and water potential under conditions of moderate stress.
Sugar water effect plants...

Sugar Water Effect on Plants

Sugar Water Effect on Plants
Plants require three essentials, light, water and nutrients to thrive and produce optimum yield. Plants naturally produce sugars, such as glucose and sucrose. These sugars are needed to produce energy, promote growth and aide in the processes of respiration and transpiration. Sugar can also be introduced to a plant through watering to enhance growth and production.

Natural Sugar Production
1. Plants naturally produce the sugars such as glucose during photosynthesis. The sugar is produced to be stored for later conversion to energy for the organism. This production of sugars also aids in the absorption of nutrients and minerals.
Functions of Sugars in Plants
2. Sugar helps a plant to grow and helps to regulate gene expression by causing less water to be moved to the plant's roots. Plant sugars are converted to energy. This energy is then used to build new cell tissue. The energy produced by glucose also induces the process of cellular respiration.
Benefits of Sugar
3. Plant sugars help the soil to retain more moisture. Sugar doesn't draw water away from the plant as salt does, therefore, it keeps the plant from getting dehydrated as well. Glucose production increases the overall strength and health of the plant.
Too Much Sugar
4. Sugar, in moderation, is not harmful to plants. If the amount of `in the soil becomes too high, this promotes a higher incidence of fungi and bacteria. A typical fungus that thrives on sugar is yeast. Excess amounts of yeast causes an increase in the risk of an infection to plants and humans.
USC Study
5. In a study at University of Southern California, three groups of bean plants were watered with different degrees of sugar water (0 g, 25 g and 50 g solutions). The group of plants which had been watered with the 50 g sugar/water solution were not only the largest and strongest of the plants, they were also the healthiest and highest yielding plants.
Sugar Water Effect Plants..

The Effect of Sugared Water on Plants

The Effect of Sugared Water on Plants

Now everyone wants to tell you what to do with your water or your plants and you have got to use distilled water or sugar water, put aspirin in your water but the theory on this is prefered fresh water as opposed to Kool Aid any day although Kool Aid is pretty good with the plants and flowers .
It is better to change out the water every two days and cut the stems on your cut flowers than to add the sugar water because the sugar is just stopping the water from going stale and so in the end you don't want to give your guest water that has been sitting out for a few days but you don't want to give your plants and your flowers water that has been sitting out or has some artificial ingredients added so it is found that sugar water is great because it does have that sugar water that sometimes sustains your flowers a little bit longer.
In the end cutting the stems a few inches and adding fresh water every couple days is going to make your flowers last longer than anything else that you can do and just by leaving them in the basement or in the garage wherever it is cooler and you'll find that your flowers will last a lot longer in the end that way too. So there really is no need to add sugared water to your flowers because in the end fresh water is all they want."
Sugar Water Effect Plants.

Does sugar help plants grow?

Does sugar help plants grow?

Sometimes a pinch of sugar is added to water and fed to a plant that has wilted and hasn't been watered for a while. The sugar can help the plant quickly get back to normal. However, this doesn't always work and sometimes the plant might be too far gone to save.However, sugar is not usually added to the water that is fed to normal, healthy plants.Research photosynthesis, plants use sugar for energy.

The effect of loss of water in wilted plants as well as cut-flowers is an analogous process, that is, loss of turgor pressure (water pressure). Although, the effect on the cut-flowers is irreversible, the wilted plant may spring back to life. Plants have tiny holes in their leaves known as stomata that allow the exchange of O2 and CO2, but result in the loss of H20. In principle, a continuous water column from the tip of a plants root to the high leaf on the plant is a continuous water column (like a chain of water molecules). As H20 evaporates from the top, that in turns pulls the chain of water molecules upward all the way from the root. As long as this turgor pressure is maintained the plant will remain upright (not wilt and slumped). But, in conditions of low water and/or high temperatures greater than average evaporation from the leaves (which is actually called transpiration) occurs, and at some point the water column is no longer continuous.

However, when the stomata close, the plant can reverse some of this process by releasing stored water from nearby cells and thereby restore the continuous water column in the plant. Water also play an equally important role in photosynthesis, where it is broken down as an oxygen source, hydrogen ion and electron donor. Its role in photosynthesis is absolute. No water no photosynthesis. So what the point? Well, the function of photosynthesis is to produce energy in the form of sugars (e.g. glucose, etc.) In the case of the cut flowers, you are temporarily breaking the water column in the plant, which is why you are supposed to cut the stems under water with something sharp.
The cut flowers are immediately put into a vase full of water or even cut in this container. A sugar, antioxidant and anti-microbial agent (the little packets that come with cut-flowers) is poured into the vase. This solution replenishes the plants food supplies temporarily, since the water column was disrupted and food may have been lost. Flowers last much longer in the sugary solution, than in plain tap water or deionized water for that matter. Also, cutting the flowers after a day or to increases the water transport/transpiration potential of the plant. In the case of the wilted plant, sugar might temporarily help the plant, but in the absence of water any effect will be trivial and short-lived. The plant can make its own food when intact. It can't make its own water.
Sugar Water Effect Plants...
How-does-sugar-water-affect-growth-in.plants ?