An Inexpensive, Easy‐to‐Use, and Highly Customizable Growth Chamber Optimized for Growing Large Plants

Thu M. Tran1, David M. Braun1

1 Plant Imaging Consortium
Publication Name:  Current Protocols in Plant Biology
Unit Number:   
DOI:  10.1002/cppb.20059
Online Posting Date:  December, 2017
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The ability to grow plants in highly controlled and reproducible environments is a critical factor for successful plant biology experiments. This protocol describes a simple and inexpensive method for constructing a fully automatic controlled growth chamber that can be easily adapted in plant biology laboratories as well as classrooms. All the materials described in this protocol can be found in garden and home improvement stores or through websites, making the procurement and setup for growing plants in a controlled environment less expensive and convenient. Furthermore, the system is highly customizable and can be used to study plant responses to numerous abiotic and biotic stress conditions. The growth chamber is designed to enable growth and characterization of large plants, such as maize and soybean. © 2017 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Keywords: controlled environmental conditions; growth chamber; maize; soybean

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Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Strategic Planning
  • Basic Protocol 1: Setting Up the Growth Chamber
  • Basic Protocol 2: Using the Growth Chamber to Grow Maize and Soybean Model Inbred Lines from Seeds to the MID‐Vegetative Stage
  • Basic Protocol 3: Using the Growth Chamber for Growing Rapid Cycling Maize and Soybean Lines From Seed to Seed
  • Commentary
  • Literature Cited
  • Figures
  • Tables
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Basic Protocol 1: Setting Up the Growth Chamber

  • Components of growth chamber (see Table 20.5.9000)
  • Medium‐sized flat‐head screwdriver
  • Pest control: Yellow sticky pest traps (Hummert International, cat. no. 01‐3700, optional)

Basic Protocol 2: Using the Growth Chamber to Grow Maize and Soybean Model Inbred Lines from Seeds to the MID‐Vegetative Stage

  • Ferrous sulfate (Hummert International, 07‐0851)
  • N‐P‐K 12‐12‐12 fertilizer (Dyma Green, Hummert International, cat. no. 07‐2812)
  • Peat moss–based potting soil (Pro‐Mix BX, Hummert International, cat. no. 10‐2000)
  • Maize cv. B73 seeds (Germplasm Resources Information Network, stock no. PI 550473)
  • Soybean cv. W82 seeds (Germplasm Resources Information Network, stock no. PI 518671)
  • Iron chelate (Sprint 330 FE, Hummert International, cat. no. 07‐1511)
  • N‐P‐K 20‐20‐20 fertilizer (Jack's Classic, Hummert International, 65‐3850)
  • Growth chamber (see protocol 1)
  • 11 × 12–cm seedling pots (Hummert International, cat. no. 14‐3362)
  • Seedling flats without holes (Hummert International, cat. no. 11‐3110)
  • 2‐gal. (7.57‐liter) pots (Hummert International, cat. no. 13‐0208)
  • Stakes (optional)
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Literature Cited

Literature Cited
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