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Republic of the Philippines

Cavite State University


Indang, Cavite

GROSS COMPOSITION OF PLANTS

BOTANY
Submitted to:
Ms. Arleen Calipjo
Submitted by:
Ardee Hojilla
Edelyn Lanticse
Jennifre Loyola
Gelaine Malapascua
Alfa Blanche Mojica
BSE BIOLOGY 2-1

INTRODUCTION
Gross composition in plants is the overall matter in it. It is composed of the percent water, dry matter,
inorganic and organic matter. Different parts possess by plants has its own role and is important in
performing processes that supports their growth and development. However, these structures will not
function and develop without the organic and inorganic compounds. Inorganic compounds, which are
present mostly in the environment, are being used by plants to produce organic compounds through
biochemical processes. These organic and inorganic compounds, which comprises a plant, can be
determined if its structures are broken down into its chemical components

Water is the most abundant inorganic compound which comprises a plant. This inorganic
compound is one of the most significant substances helping in the delivery and transport of nutrients from
the root to the different parts of a plant. Since water constitutes most of the plant, it can be determined
through the process of drying. The loss of water can be measured by the difference between the fresh
weight and dry weight of the plant. The dry weight is usually taken as the basis for expressing results of
chemical analysis rather than fresh weight because of the variability of the water content in plant tissues
(Alejar, et.al. 2013)
Once the plant has dried, inorganic elements will remain if the plant is subjected to a process
known as combustion. This process turns the dried plant into ashes and further into gray-white colored
ashes. During this process, the organic compounds such as lipids, carbohydrates, proteins,
and nucleic acids changed into gaseous forms like water and carbon dioxide. Also, the remains in the ash
are inorganic elements and minerals which are in the form of oxides
OBJECTIVES
This experiment aims to be familiarize in the different ways of determining the dry matter,
moisture, organic matter and ash content of the plant.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
The experiment for gross composition of plants is done by: preparation of plant materials,
combustion or dry ashing and calculation of percentage for dry matter, organic matter and ash content.
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9.

Weigh 35 grams of freshly harvested herbaceous plant materials.


Clean, wash off soil particles and remove dead, damaged leaves and adhering soil particles.
Separate the plant organ (roots, stems and leaves) and weigh it.
Wrap in clean paper, label and dry in oven at 70 degree C for 3 days.
Determine the dry weight of each organ.
Combustion and ashing process of the dried plant organs.
Heat the material until it turns into ash.
Keep the ash for next experiment
Compute for the percentage of water, dry matter, ash and organic matter.

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

Table 1.1 Weight of plant organs


PLANT ORGAN
leaves
stems
roots
Total

WEIGHT
15g
14g
6g
35g

Based on table 1.1, leaves is the heaviest which weighs 15g. It was followed by stems
which weighs 14g and the lightest is roots that weighs 6g. Compare to leaves and stems, roots has
its big distance of weight.
Table 1.2 Weight of dried plant organs in oven
PLANT ORGAN
leaves
stems
roots
Total

WEIGHT
7g
6g
3g
16g

Based on table 1.2, leaves is also the heaviest even if it is dried in oven. It has 7g while
the stem has 6g. Roots is still the lightest which weighs about 3g.
Table 1.3 Weight of Ash
PLANT ORGAN ASH
leaves
stems
roots
Total

WEIGHT
1
3g
1g
5g

Based on table1.3, when the plant organs are weighed when it becomes an ash, stem is
the heaviest with 3g. Leaves and roots only weighs 1g. It is observable in other data that leaves is
the heaviest, but when it turns into ash, it becomes light weight just like the roots.

Computations

% water= FW-DW x 100


FW

35g-16g x 100 = 54.29


35g

%dry matter= DW x 100


FW

16g x 100 = 45.71


35g

%ash = AW x 100
FW

5g x 100 = 14.29
35g

%organic matter = DW-AW x 100


FW

16g-5g x 100 = 31.43


35g

CONCLUSION
1. The more reliable basis of plant analysis is the dry weight than fresh because of the
variability of the water content in plant tissues. In dry weight, the dry matter remains when
water is remove. The dry matter undergoes combustion which results to ash that contains
inorganic components or minerals.
2. Based on the computation, water is the most abundant inorganic compound in plant tissue.

REFERENCE
http://www.academia.edu/9658908/Exercise_2_Gross_Composition_of_Plants_Synedrella_nodiflora_?
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