Date of Award

8-2020

Culminating Project Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Biological Sciences - Ecology and Natural Resources: M.S.

Department

Biology

College

College of Science and Engineering

First Advisor

Matthew L. Julius

Second Advisor

Jorge E. Arriagada

Third Advisor

Debra K. Japp

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Abstract

Technological advances have allowed for increased accessibility and production of many goods to our growing world population. Food production is an area of increased interest; with research focusing on both increases in productivity and enhancing sustainability. Plant growth is a function of light, temperature, and nutrient availability. Carbon is a macronutrient acquired from the atmosphere and converted to carbohydrates in the leaves for delivery to other plant tissue regions. In this research we examine the use of CO2 infused foliar spray as a mechanism for enhancing CO2 delivery to leaves. This methodology enhances plant group while decreasing the use of chemical fertilizers and increasing carbon sequestration efficiency. This work demonstrates physiological modifications in plant biochemistry and growth consistent with CO2 uptake by the organisms. This evidence includes chlorophyll A enhancement and increases in biomass, maturation time, and fruit production. Research also identifies optimum design foliar mist delivery to target organism. An additional benefit of the application is also documented. The when CO2 is added to water the pH decreases. As the plant removes the CO2 from water for carbon assimilation, the pH increases. This pH instability in the microenvironment makes it difficult for certain bacterial and fungal micropathogens to establish themselves on the plant. Results of this work should be beneficial to growers in enclosed growing environments and urban situations.

Comments/Acknowledgements

I would like to thank my advisor, Dr. Matthew Julius, for his support and assistance throughout my research. Next, I would like to thank my committee members, Drs. Jorge Arriagada and Debra Japp. All have encouraged me through the completion of this degree. I would also like to thank Mr. John Archibald and others from CO2 GRO, Inc. for providing support and assistance in the execution of this work.

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