What's Happening Underground?

February 14, 2018 by Mary Hosier

What kinds of data can you collect to help predict when your garden will emerge and bloom?

“Hello scientists! We saw six tulip plants emerging in our garden today. Our school is close to the ocean. We put worms in our garden bed to keep the soil healthy and we called it worm savings. ” Reports the Children’s School in San Diego, California.

Gardeners across the Northern Hemisphere are watching and waiting for their own gardens to emerge. Students at Sandy Ridge school in North Carolina are asking, “How many days does it take for them to sprout and flower.” They’re creating bar graphs with their data.

Many students are wondering how air and soil temperature might affect tulip plants. Also, will rain speed things up? 

California: “We think our tulips emerged because it is very sunny here. We measured the temperature yesterday and the air temp was 68F (21C) and the soil temp was 60F (14C).” San Diego on February 7th. 

Washington: “We have had mild temps 40’s-50’s with many days of rain.” Buckley on February 6th.

Alabama: “We checked on our tulips on this sunny but very cold winter day. Thirteen emerged! The windchill was 20 degrees, cold for us! ” Hartnell on February 5th.

Utah: “I have never seen tulips this early by months. It’s been in the 40s to high 50s the last while.” West Jordan on February 4th.