My science class is growing unknown seeds and I’ve been watering it for about 7 weeks (https://i.stack.imgur.com/oHDFO.jpg)

  • 1
    It might be a little too early for anyone to tell. Can you get a picture, of the other side of the plant? Thank you – GardenGems Nov 25 '19 at 0:43
  • 2
    Assuming that part of your class is plant identification, why should WE do YOUR work? – Jurp Nov 25 '19 at 1:16
  • Another photo taken from the other side, showing the shape of the leaves might be helpful – Bamboo Nov 25 '19 at 14:07

It's what is known locally here as a green fred weed. After all, a rose by any other name would smell as sweet, so there you go, but are you happy?

In any science investigation you set out to solve a puzzle, and since these puzzles involve many steps you first need a log of your observations and clear notes of the steps you took. Do you have that log to hand in? It will constitute much of your grade even if you fail to find the name.

First the seed. Stop right there and describe as accurately as you can, taking notes, an individual seed and whether they all look alike. Dimensions in metric, colour, smoothness, slim or fat, blunt or sharp. Take a photo. Sometimes, all you need is the seed to tell immediately what it is, or definitely what it is not. Use botanical terms as much as you can - seeds fall into many groups besides big and small, find out what these are and decide which group your seed might belong in.

Next describe your potting soil - do a pH test and note in the log the constituent parts, peat, vermiculite, sand and so on. Note the date the seed was sown and how deep you planted it, plus the temperature the pot is living in and the amount of light available (bright, shady and so on). The date the first seedling appeared and describe in as much detail as you can what you see and how it changes over time. If you have more than one come up, tease a single seedling out and wash off the soil so you can describe the root. More photos, constantly take detailed notes. Use a magnifying lens to get detail.

You may not know exactly what you have until it flowers; it is possible that your instructor chose some plant that produces a flower reliably a short time after sowing, in which case you are lucky.

  • What on earth is a 'green fred weed'? I've googled and all that comes up is marijuana because of the vernacular term 'weed'... – Bamboo Nov 25 '19 at 14:09
  • 1
    In certain circles very young naturalists, when out on a walk of discovery, are encouraged to call out "I found a fred" when they uncover something interesting but they don't know the name. Then the group gathers round to share expertise, and the discoverer gets to learn new things, perhaps the true name, of the object found. – Colin Beckingham Nov 25 '19 at 14:58
  • Oh, I get it, its just like saying I found something or I found a plant of some sort... – Bamboo Nov 25 '19 at 15:06

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.