Materials Research Laboratory At ucsb an nsf mrsec

Дата канвертавання17.04.2016
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Materials Research Laboratory



Student Worksheet

What variations could we detect in different parts of a Clarkia unguiculata flower bud?

(Dissecting of a Clarkia unguiculata flower bud)


Be careful with dissecting tools they are very sharp.

Your team has been hired to determine if climate change has had any type of effect on the number of pollen grains and ovules a flower of Clarkia has produced. Your team leader (your teacher) will show you a video on how to dissect and count the ovules and pollen of a flower bud. We need you to choose at least two flower buds from your plants to dissect then count the ovules and pollen grains that they contain. We also need to know how your results compare to those of your classmates. Good Luck!


Question: What are the possible variations that could exist in different flowers of the same plant or of different plants?
Design Challenge:

Draw and label each part of the flower. And explain how pollination takes place.



Day 1

    1. Carefully remove or cut out all the petals and sepals in your flower bud revealing only the anthers and the ovary.

    2. Choose any one of the large anthers you wish to count.

    3. Using your scalpel scrape all the pollen on the large anther onto your glass slide.

    4. After you have scraped all of the pollen add a drop of stain and place a cover slip on your sample.

    5. Place the transparent grid on your microscope and place the slide on the grid.

    6. Carefully count the number of pollen grains present on one grid of your slide. Multiply this number by the number of grids that contain pollen to get an estimate of the number of pollen grains present in that anther. Multiply this number by 4 to estimate the number of pollen in the 4 large anthers.

    7. Scrape off the pollen grains of a small anther onto another microscope slide.

    8. Then count these pollen grains as you did with the large anther. Multiply this number by 4 and add this to the total from the large anthers. This is your estimate of the total number of pollen grains for your flower.

Record your observations

total large anther pollen

total small anther

Total pollen

Class average

Trial 1

____x 4 = ____

____x 4 = ____

Trial 2

____x 4 = ____

____x 4 = ____

Day 2

    1. Place the ovary of your flower bud on the dissecting pan or flat hard surface.

    2. Using your scalpel softly cut along the ridges of the ovary’s lengthwise. Make your cut from one end of the ovary to the other end.

    3. Then carefully open the ovary to reveal the ovules.

    4. Using the low power lens of your microscope or a magnifying glass and a probe, count the total number of ovules found in your flower’s ovary and record your results. Use your probe to keep track of the ovules you have counted.

    5. Slides can be cleaned with warm water and all other flower materials can be thrown out.

Record Your Observations

Number of ovules

Class average


Trial 1

Trial 2

Analyze the Results

  1. Describe the physical appearance of your first flower bud:

  1. First flower bud: ________________________________________________________________________

  2. Second flower bud: ________________________________________________________________________

    1. Did your flower buds differ in the number of ovules and pollen from those of your classmates? Why or why not? __________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________

    2. In what part of your procedure was there more room for experimental error? Why? ________

Draw Conclusions (Use the back of your paper if you need more space for your answers.)

  1. What environmental factors could account for a difference in ovules or pollen in flower buds out in the wild? ______________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________


  1. What other possible physical variations could plants have out in the wild? ______________________________

  2. How could these other possible variations affect the plant’s chances of survival? ___________________________________________________________________________

  1. If you knew a plant was being driven to extinction, what measures could we take to reverse this problem?


  1. Explain why it is important to study and monitor plants around the world?


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