The Effect of Carbonated Water on Green Plants

Lindsay Danzell and Jessica Greenberg

CU Boulder, Fall 2002

If plants are fed carbonated water for a period of time then it should grow faster than plants given regular tap water. This is because most plants absorb nutrients dissolved in water through their roots. Club Soda or carbonated water contains macronutrients essential to plant growth. Those macronutrients are: carbon, oxygen, hydrogen, phosphorous, potassium, sulfur, and sodium. Given proper nutrients, plants should grow at a faster rate than those who do not acquire as much of the nutrients.

We used six Helzine soleirolii, commonly known as Baby’s Tears, plants to conduct our experiment. The plants were divided into two groups, A and B. Both groups were placed in the same amount of sunlight and given the same soil. The plants were fed according to florist instructions. However instead of plain tap water, group B was fed Club Soda. Every day at 7 pm each plant had one of its shoots measured and recorded. This continued for ten days. At the end of the experiment, data was arranged and compared.

The average shoot of the plants given tap water grew 67% (n = 3) of their original height, whereas the average shoot given carbonated water grew 170% (n = 3) of their original height. In performing the t-test, the value of t was 0.135.

The difference in growth rates between treatments supports our hypothesis. Plants given carbonated water not only grew faster but also developed a healthier shade of green in comparison to plants given tap water. Although the t-test did not prove significance in this experiment, we feel that the growth rates are enough to support the hypothesis. Carbonated water is effective in promoting growth over a ten day period for Helzine soleirolii. Further experimentation to confirm our hypothesis should include different species of plants and a longer time period for observation. Nutrients dissolved in water may be more accessible to green plants because they are easily absorbed, as opposed to absorbing nutrients through soil which involves water dispersing through the soil and then carrying nutrients to the roots. The nutrients in the Club Soda are like a double dose of essentials for plants.