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^^ Movement of Water Through the Stem

^^ Movement of Water Through the Stem

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Published by: angel11dust on May 11, 2010
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Transport of Water and Minerals Inand Out of the Plant
Anya Pena, Christian Solis, Jerick Bolintiam, Justine Alain Sy,Noemi Nunez, Venus Banaag
Cell activities, such as diffusion, osmosis, imbibition, and guttation, involve the transport of water and materialsin and out of the cell membrane- which is essential for a plant to maintain equilibrium in an unstable environment.The transport of the dissolved substances in different environments affects the plant cell in different ways. Tofurther understand the cell activities and the environment¶s effect on the plant cell, seven different tests wereconducted. Diffusion of selected plant pigments was observed in the first experiment where
 Bixa orellana
seedswere placed in different test tubes containing different substances, namely: distilled water, boiled water, vegetableoil, and heated vegetable oil. Osmosis was observed in the second experiment where small strips of the lower epidermis of the
 Rhoeo spathodea
was put two different slides- one with water and the other with salt solution. Thefactors affecting the integrity of the cell membrane was determined in the third experiment using
 Pyrus Malus
 peelings which was placed in different temperatures and substances. Imbibition was observed in the fourthexperiment where wood, rubber, and corn seeds were put in two beakers- one with water and the other withkerosene. It was also noticed that each of the material had an increase in weight when placed in kerosene. Themovement of water through the stem was observed in the pechay stalk of the the fifth experiment. Transpiration wasobserved in the sixth experiment which also compared four identical leaves with different applications of vasellin.Finally, guttation was observed in rice seedlings which were covered with a wide mouth jar.
diffusion, osmosis, cell membrane, imbibition, active transport, transpiration, guttation
The cell membrane is the biologicalmembrane separating the interior of a cellfrom the outside environment. It is a semi- permeable membrane surrounding all cells,which controls the movement of substancesin an out of the cells; therefore, responsiblefor maintaining a steady and stable livingcondition²or a state of equilibrium²evenin the midst of a transient environment. It isinvolved in a wide variety of cellular  processes, such as growth, absorption, andrespiration, and serves as the attachment point for the intracellular cytoskeleton and,sometimes, the extra-cellular cell wall.There are two ways in which transport canoccur across a membrane, either by passiveor active, depending on the energy requiredduring the process. Simple diffusion, a kind
of passive transport, moves water fromregions of high water concentration (lowsolute concentration) to regions of low water concentration (high solute concentration).This process however, is only possible for solutes that are readily permeable such asnonpolar and small polar molecules. Other  processes include: bulk flow, osmosis,imbibition, and active transport.Through this lab exercise, the studentshould have been able: (1) To determinesome factors that affect the diffusion process; (2) To differentiate betweendiffusion and imbibition; (3) To determinesome factors that affect the permeability of cell membranes; and (4) To demonstrate thevarious processes by which materials aretransported and transpired.
METHODOLOGYDiffusion of Selected Plant Pigments
± Atsuete (
 Bixa orellana
) seeds were weighed by Group number 1 and placed 1g of seedwas placed into 4 test tubes. These test tubeswere labelled 1-4. In test tube number 1,10ml of distilled water was placed. In testtube number 2, the group put 10ml of distilled water and then placed it in a boilingwater bath. In test tube number 3, they put10ml of vegetable oil. In test tube number 4,10ml of pre-heated vegetable oil was placed.After 30 minutes, these test tubes wereshook and the color intensities in each wascompared by using +, ++, and +++.
± Thin sections of the lower epidermal side of Bangka-bangkaan(
radescantia spathacea
) were cut by Groupnumber 3 and these were placed into a wetmount. Using this examination under theLPO of the microscope, a sketch of a turgidcell was made. Next, without moving theslide, water was drawn off using a paper towel and was replaced with a 5% saltsolution. A sketch showing the change in thecells was then made based on theobservations under a microscope.
Factors Affecting the Integrity of CellMembranes
± Apple peels were acquired byour group by using a sharp blade. 7 sectionsof peels were placed in a beaker filled withdistilled water. The first three sections weretransferred into three test tubes each with10ml of distilled water and labelled A, Band C. Test tube A was placed under roomtemperature (25
C) while Test tube B was placed inside a refrigerator (10
C) and Testtube C was placed in a water bath (60
C).After observing for 30 minutes, each of thethree sections were placed into wet mountsand viewed under the microscope. Color 
intensity in each was compared by using +,++, and +++. For the remaining 4 sections,they were also placed in wet mounts andlabelled D-G. A drop of pure chloroformwas added to D. A drop of 50% acetone wasadded to E. 0.1 M of NaOH and 0.1 M of HCl were added to F and G respectively.These four were observed under themicroscope after 15 minutes and after 30minutes. The observations were thenrecorded.
± The weights of 2 pieces of wood and 2 pieces of rubber were weighed by Group number 4. 2 sets of 10g corn seedwere also weighed. In one beaker, one pieceof wood, one piece of rubber and 10g of corn seeds was placed. Water was addeduntil each of the materials was completelyimmersed. In the other beaker, one piece of wood, one piece of rubber and 10g of cornseeds was and immersed with kerosene.After 90 minutes, all the materials from thetwo beakers were taken out and dried gently.The final weights of these materials werethen measured.
Movement of Water Through theStem
± Pechay leaves with intact petiolewere gathered by Group number 3. 1 cmwas cut off from the base of the petiole. Theleaves were immersed in a bottle filled with10ml of 0.01% eosin dye solution. After 15minutes, a leaf was removed and the stalk was split longitudinally. The length covered by the dye was measured. From another leaf,a thin cross section of the stalk was cut andviewed under the LPO of the microscope.The stained tissues were then identifiedthrough being viewed under the microscope.
Comparison of Cuticular andStomatal Transpiration by Four LeavesMethod
4 identical leaves were gathered by Group number 4. These were thenlabelled A, B, C, and D. Leaf A was thecontrol. Using vasellin, each of the threeremaining leaves were greased. The upper surface of B was greased while Leaf C hadits lower surface greased. Both sides of Dwere greased. These leaves were thenhanged by a thread to expose both sides toair. The set-ups were observed after onemeeting.
± 5 rice grains were plantedon a container by Group number 1. Thelower portion of the container was immersedwith water. When the seedlings are 2-5cmlong, they were covered with a transparent bell jar (a wide-mouthed bottle can also beused). This set-up was observed and the

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