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Tomato Plants Growing Report


Abstract

Different studies have shown that tomato (Lycopersicon esculenturn Mill) is one of the most preferred vegetable sources around the world (Birhanu & Tilahun 2010, p. 1239). This fruits provide human beings with vitamin A and C which they are found to be rich in. Water is a crucial component in determining in the quality of harvested tomato fruits.

Water associated stress adversely affects tomato yield, in fact, “studies have shown that too much water and too little water are both harmful to the tomato plant” (Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 680. The tomato selected plants and weighing them; the mother plants were then uprooted, cleaned, put in separate bags and weighed.

The weighing was repeated after the plants had dried for a period of seven days in a dehydrator set at 70 degrees Celsius. The results of this study show that different tomato plant attributes are directly related to each other as long as the environmental conditions are concerned

Introduction

Tomato (Lycopersicon esculenturn Mill) is one of the most preferred vegetable sources around the world (Birhanu & Tilahun 2010, p. 1239) Tomato fruits are a rich source of both vitamin A and C and thus are used in human diets as an important source of these nutrients.

Tomatoes are consumed raw or cooked. They may be eaten alone or combined with other food products. Tomatoes may be eaten as salad in their raw state or made into soups, juice, ketchup or pickels (Nahar & Ullah 2011)

Water plays a crucial role in the quality of harvested tomato fruits. Water associated stress adversely affects tomato yield, in fact, “studies have shown that too much water and too little water are both harmful to the tomato plant” (Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 680)

. Other factors such as “constant high temperatures, humidity and poor soil erosion may also have a negative effect on the yield of the tomato crop” (Birhanu & Tilahun 2010, p. 12340).

The eco-physiological and morphological studies of tomato and other plants have helped in the creation of necessary mechanisms to counter adverse environmental effects (Birhanu & Tilahun 2010).

All plant studies have often been conducted basing on the nutritional factors of the plants, thus from a nutritional standpoint, plant analysis is based on the principle that the concentration of nutrient within the plant is integral value of all the factors that have interacted to affect it(Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 680). Research regarding soil fertility has been carried out for so many years.

This data has produced some reliable sampling procedures that can be applied to all crops that are produced commercially. For several fruiting crops, the fruits are often chosen though petioles are usually selected in some instances eg for crops such as cotton (Birhanu & Tilahun 2010, p. 1242).

Sampling of fruits involves selecting fruits that have recently matured for better analysis. Plant samples are quickly transported to the laboratory immediately in properly labeled paper bags that allow for transpiration, as this reduces the possibility of rotting (Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 680).

In moisture analysis, oven dried samples are usually weighed, though this is a cumbersome process as plant materials may absorb more moisture during the weighing process. Moisture factor, which is calculated by oven drying only a few sub-samples from the lot, is used to correct the error that may come as a result of moisture absorption.

Moisture factor is identified by dividing the weight of air dried samples with that of oven dried samples (Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 683). The vacuolated nature of most vegetable plants makes the ratio of dry weight to fresh weight be a valuable anatomical index measure (Birhanu & Tilahun 2010, p. 1247).

The fresh weight provides information on the nature of the whole plant system: cell walls, protoplasts, vacuoles of living cells, walls and all other contents in their normal state.

The wet and dry “weight analysis is of agricultural importance in the sense that the fresh weight represents the conditions of the growth and water status” (Birhanu & Tilahun 2010, p. 1247. In fluctuating climatic conditions, this can be seen to vary more frequently on day to day basis or sometimes on hourly basis.

This observation has created a major dilemma in agricultural productivity in that many analysts have put in doubt the values provided by the determination of wet weight.

In the current practical, tomato plants were sampled and their moisture content measured in addition to other aspects (Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 683).

The practical basically involved selecting suitable tomato plants; obtaining and counting the number of tomato fruits on the selected plants and weighing them; the mother plants were then uprooted, cleaned, put in separate bags and weighed. The weighing was repeated after the plants had dried for a period of seven days in a dehydrator set at 70 degrees Celsius.

Objectives

The objective of this practical was to identify whether controlled growth of tomato plants impacts on the moisture content, height and the total yield.

Materials and Methods

Materials

  • Tomato plants
  • Tape measure
  • Empty paper bags
  • Dehydrator
  • Weighing machine
  • Thermometer

Methods

1. The tomato plants to be used in the analysis were grown 10 weeks ago and the class was later divided into groups of 5 members with 5 tomato plants each.

2. The appropriate tomato plants were chosen.

3.The heights of the plants were then measured from the top of the plant to the beginning of the root system.

4. Empty paper bags (Smaller ones for the fruits and bigger ones for the plants) to be used in the practical were labelled according to plant number, weighed and their weights recorded.

5. Tomatoes from the different selected plants were collected and weighed in separate labelled bags.

6. The plants were then uprooted carefully and all soil washed from the root system.

7. The leaves, stems and roots of each plant were cut and the sections placed into separate paper bags for each plant.

8. After filling separate paper bags with all the contents from an entire plant, holes were poked, weight taken and recorded as the wet plant weight.

9. The plants were then placed in a dehydrator for 7 days at 70°C, after which the weights were measured and recorded as the dry plant weight.

10. The percentage moisture of the plant was calculated by deducting the dry plant weight from the weight plant weight, then dividing the answer with the weight plant weight and then multiplying by 100.

Results

Prior to the weighing of the tomato plant materials, the plants had been subjected to controlled growth conditions. This might have been responsible for the “narrow range observed in the moisture content results” (Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 679).

The moisture content of the selected tomato plant is indicated in table 1 below. The results indicate that the moisture content of the tomato plants was about the same regardless of the number of fruits and the height of the plant. More explanation on this finding is captured in the discussion. Part.

The moisture percentage was calculated as follows:

Plant 16

Plant 16 formula

Plant 17

Plant 17 formula

Plant 18

Plant 18 formula

Plant 19

Plant 19 formula

Pant 26

Plant 26 formula

Figure 1

Plant No. Plant high (cm) Number of fruit Wet weight (g) Dry weight (g) % water in plant.
16 160 13 909 165 81.84
17 173 9 929 171.5 81.10
18 162 21 872.5 205.5 76.44
19 158 20 930 169.5 81.77
26 157 13 733.5 151.5 79.34
Average 162 15.5 874.8 172.6 80.098

Discussion

This practical was carried to basically identify the moisture content of plants and how it relates to the height and number of fruits.

Tomato plants were used where the heights of different samples were taken, the number of fruits measured and the moisture content analyzed. The height of the plants ranged from 157 to 173 and this averaged to 162.

The height of the plants had no relationship with the number of fruits on the plants. However, the height had some relation to the moisture content as it was generally observed that tall plants had more moisture.

However, this was not always the case as some shorter plants had heavy stems than other longer plants. Most of the analyzed tomato plants had moisture content of around 81%, a few were below this value.

The average percentage moisture content was 80.098(Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 682). The findings confirm what most scholars say about moisture content of tomato plants(Birhanu & Tilahun 2010).

The increase in the yield indicates how reduction of stress associated with tomato plants impact crop production.

Other studies that have concentrated on the effect of irrigation cutback have shown a tremendous increase in the total marketable yields (Nahar & Ullah 2011, p. 682).

However, yields that result into high value extra large fruits usually increase with irrigation up to a certain point (Birhanu & Tilahun 2010).

For tomato processing, it’s often observed that the higher the solid content, the easier the processing and thus the greater the profits.

Conclusion

The objective of this practical was to identify whether controlled growth of tomato plants impacts on the moisture content, height and the total yield.

The results of this study show that different tomato plant attributes are directly related to each other as long as the environmental conditions are concerned. The plants used in this experiment were grown under similar controlled conditions.

There growth was closely monitored for the entire period. In the end, their height, fruit yield and moisture content were not of bigger difference.

It’s thus advisable that farmers who intent to take part in tomato farming should ensure that they follow the best practices that are designed to counter different environmental conditions. If all the guidelines are well adhered to then its possible to produce enough tomato plants that will be able to address the food shortage challenges.

References

Birhanu, K.,& Tilahun, K., 2010. Fruit Yield and Quality of Drip-Irrigated Tomato Under Deficit Irrigation. African Journal of Food Agriculture Nutrition Development; 10 (2):2139-2152

Nahar, K., & Ullah, M., 2011. The Effect of Water Stress on the Moisture Content Distribution in Soil and Morphological Characters of Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill) Cultivars.Thaka: University of Thaka

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IvyPanda. 2019. "Tomato Plants Growing." May 25, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/tomato-report/.

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IvyPanda. (2019) 'Tomato Plants Growing'. 25 May.

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