Aubrey, Avni, Victoria, and Sara

Our site is located between the field and the forest. It is a couple yards away from the containment pool, and just a few feet from the forest. Our site is atop the hill leading down to the containment pool. It is on a slope. Our site is thick with weeds and grasses, and we accumulated various vegetation samples. Originally we had a grid for our plot, but the weeds and grasses were very difficult to stand in. We then decided that a transect line is best for our special little plot.

69830_489408388082_618353082_7198108_5093687_n.jpgThis a picture looking at the South view69830_489408408082_618353082_7198111_6603313_n.jpgThis is a picture looking at the North view

74167_1701835945576_1228280077_31915104_444776_n.jpg This is a picture looking at the East view69830_489408403082_618353082_7198110_1661713_n.jpgThis is a picture looking at the West view

This is a pictoral display of our second home...aka our microclimate site for Bio 2.

Average Temperature
37.15 (C )
Average Light Intensity
189.9 (Lux)
Soil Temperature
20.8 ( C )
Dew Point
15.64 ( C )
Absolute Humidity
14.2 g/m^3
Relative Humidity

Abiotic Factors:
There were abiotic factors that characterized our entire site on the dates if our study. These were habitat (pond, lake, ocean, and mountain), weather (this would include temperature), cloud covercloudy.jpg, and rain drop.gif, and wind.WIND.jpg These five abiotic factors all contributed to the types of plant life and how well those plants survived. We picked a plot at the top of a hill in the back of Great Valley High School near the softball field. The plot was on top of a steep hill. When it rained the water was forced to roll down the hill. The weather during our experiment was a mix between days with lots of sun and other days having torrential rain. When we went back outside after the rainy days we found that our soil was overly-saturated. This caused the soil to be very damp and when we would lightly pull on some of the plants; it would seem that the plants were not securely in the ground. Overall, the abiotic factors had an impact on the plant life, the site, and our data.

Biotic Factors:

GOLDENROD: The Goldenrod plant grows in North American climates, and thrives in full to partial sunlight. It tends to grow rapidly, and eventually take over an area. The Goldenrod plant was present in nine out of our ten microclimates. This shows that the Goldenrod spread throughout our area. The Goldenrod grows straight and had a strong stem. In our microclimates, the Goldenrod grew very tall and towered over the other plants. The Goldenrod grows best when in well-drained soil. Our site was at the top of a hill. Due to the rain water seeping down the hill, our site was well-drained and perfect for Goldenrods.
FLEABANE: Fleabane is very similar to Goldenrod because they both prefer sunlight in well-drained soil. Fleabane is in the daisy family, and there are many varieties of colors and sizes. In our microclimate, the Fleabane was smaller and consisted of white and yellow petals. We found Fleabane in our Bruce, Squirt, Nemo, and Dory microclimates. Each of these sites had a significant amount of sunlight. Bruce’s site in particular had a high amount of sunlight, 256.17. The Fleabane most likely thrived in these sites due to the well drained soil and the sunlight.
WILD BARLEY: The wild barley has a bearded seed head. This is an exotic species that are common in the western part of the continent. Even though it is not commonly found in the eastern part of the continent, it still was a plant that we found in our microclimates. This plant grows in areas that have warmer climates. They are also found in areas that have damp soil. It was found in our area because our microclimates have warm temperatures and very damp soil.
CRABGRASS: “Crabgrass belongs in a genus of about 60 species of tropical and temperate regions. These weeds are both thrive in the moist rich soils of lawns, gardens, fields, ditch banks, and roadsides. These plants sprout from seeds in late spring or early summer and continue growing and flowering until killed by frost in the fall, creating brown or bare patches in the lawns.” Pages 22-23 These plants were found in our because crabgrass is commonly found in the west and the east.

VETCH: Vetch is a plant that is distributed throughout the temperate zones in both hemispheres. The leaves on vetch produces 3 to 10 long, weak, branching stems or vines 3 to 6 ft long. The leaves have 12 to 20 leaflets and terminate with tendrils. The purple and the white flowers appear in mid-June and are born in a cluster. The Seed pods, bearing 4 to 8 seeds each, mature unevenly from July 10 to July 25, and the pods tends to shatter soon after maturity.

KNOT WEED: The Japanese Knotweed is native to Asia, and is an invasive species. It thrives in ample sunlight. It typically takes over the microclimate it lives in, and steals nutrients and blocks sunlight from other plants. We found Knotweed in microclimate Bruce and Dory. We think the Knotweed in these microclimates was young, because it was only in two microclimates. We predict that if the Knotweed continues to grow and survives the winter, then it will spread throughout our entire site.
DOG FENNEL: The Dog Fennel flourishes in full sunlight. It blooms in the summer and fall, and the petals turn white. We found Dog Fennel that had just bloomed this fall, and some that had not bloomed yet. The Dog Fennel is invasive, and we found it within more than one microclimate.
DAISY FLEABANE: This plant can reach a height of about 3’. It blooms small white flowers at the top of long thin stems. The flowers were blooming on the plants in our site. It does not have branches, but it sometimes has thin leaves growing throughout the length of the stem. The Daisy Fleabane is thought to be a weed, but it actually benefits many small insects and bees that aid in pollination. These plants can live in very diverse habitats, and prefer disturbed habitats. This plant most likely lived in our site because of its ability to live in diverse locations. In addition, our site offered many opportunities for insect interaction due to its proximity to the forest/tree area where many insects lay their eyes.
CATS EAR: The Cat’s Ear is a weed native to Europe. It is a garden pest, and tends to spread once it begins growing in one area. The plant sprouts yellow flowers at the top of its long thin stems. The flowers were beginning to bloom in our site. It grows mostly in lawns or pastures, but it can also be found in waste areas. It has the ability to cope with different environmental settings, which is why it could survive in our site.

Microclimate NEMO: nemo.jpg

Temp (⁰C)
Light Intensity (Lux)
Dew Point (⁰C)
Relative Humidity (%)
Absolute Humidity (g/m^3)
Soil Temp (⁰C)

This is microclimate NEMO aka Victoria. It faces and is the closest plot to the containment pond. Because we were at the top of the hill, our site was mostly level, however there was a slight slope. This means that microclimate NEMO was on the lower part of our hill where it was less steep. Microclimate NEMO was in a more shaded area therefore it received less sunlight than other microclimates which could be the cause of the low soil temperature. The relative humidity of microclimate NEMO was a considerably high percentage in comparison to our other microclimates. Because it had rained previously, the rain moved towards the bottom of the hill. This microclimate was also heavily populated by large weeds and grasses which kept that rain water from continuing to run. Therefore our humidity percentage was higher because of the rain that had run down and the weeds and grasses that trapped the water in the microclimate and kept it closer to the ground. The dew point temperature was lower than the other microclimates because microclimate NEMO was in a shaded area. Without the sun microclimate NEMO is always cooler than the other microclimates. Therefore, the necessary dew point temperature was lower. As for light intensity, we expected it to be lower than 170. This is because, as mentioned before, microclimate NEMO was located in a shaded area. The mistake could have been when we were monitoring the light intensity the device may have been exposed to sunlight that was not in microclimate NEMO. Finally, the temperature is lower because microclimate NEMO was not exposed as much to sunlight.

Microclimate DORY: dory.jpg

Temp (⁰C)
Light Intensity (Lux)
Dew Point (⁰C)
Relative Humidity (%)
Absolute Humidity (g/m^3)
Soil Temp (⁰C)

This is microclimate DORY aka Sara. It is located towards the back of our site. This means that it was not completely open but was exposed to more sunlight than microclimate NEMO. It was also on a steeper part of the hill. Because microclimate DORY was more exposed to sunlight, the soil temperature was higher than microclimate NEMO by almost ten degrees. The relative humidity was low however. The drop in percentage was cause by three things. First, because it was in the middle of the hill, the rainwater that ran down the hill only passed through and did not collect. Second, because it was more exposed to sunlight, the water could have evaporated more rapidly, resulting in less humidity. Third, microclimate DORY was less populated with weeds and grasses, so there was nothing there to trap the rain. Therefore, the relative humidity was lower than other microclimates. The dew point was higher in this microclimate because it was more exposed to sunlight. The light intensity for microclimate DORY was 176. 91 which proved just right because, aforementioned, it was exposed to sunlight, but not completely. Therefore the light intensity is not higher than two hundred and not lower than one hundred fifty. The temperature for microclimate DORY was the highest however. This was due to its little vegetation. Because microclimate DORY was less populated with grass and weed, this microclimate was able to absorb and retain the warmth longer, causing it’s temperature to rise.

Microclimate SQUIRT: squirt.jpg

Temp (⁰C)
Light Intensity (Lux)
Dew Point (⁰C)
Relative Humidity (%)
Absolute Humidity (g/m^3)
Soil Temp (⁰C)

This is microclimate SQUIRT aka Avni. This microclimate was located in close proximity to microclimate DORY. In other words, it was not completely exposed to sunlight but received more than microclimate NEMO. Microclimate SQUIRT was located on a slightly steeper part of the hill than microclimate DORY. The soil temperature of microclimate SQUIRT was slightly higher than that of microclimate DORY. This could mean that microclimate SQUIRT was exposed to somewhat more sunlight. Both DORY and SQUIRT contained similar patterns in population of vegetation. SQUIRT has a relative humidity two percent higher than that of DORY. This suggests that SQUIRT is slightly more populated than DORY, but still less populated than NEMO. With slightly more vegetation, SQUIRT is able to retain more water that usually continues to run down the hill in DORY. The dew point is 21.3 a degree higher than DORY. This further proves our observation that SQUIRT is exposed to more sunlight than DORY. With more sunlight, the temperature at which water forms is higher. The light intensity however is lower than that of DORY. This could be a repeat of the mistake that occurred in microclimate NEMO. We believe that when monitoring the light intensity, we could have been placing the device in a shaded area that was unusual to microclimate SQUIRT. Finally, the temperature of microclimate SQUIRT was also lower than the temperature in microclimate DORY. This also proves our observation that SQUIRT is more populated with weeds and grass than DORY. Because there is more vegetation the warmth from the sun is not retained for a longer period.

Microclimate BRUCE: bruce.jpg

Temp (⁰C)
Light Intensity (Lux)
Dew Point (⁰C)
Relative Humidity (%)
Absolute Humidity (g/m^3)
Soil Temp (⁰C)

This is microclimate BRUCE aka Aubrey. Microclimate BRUCE was located at the very back of our site. It was located at the top of our hill, where it was more level. It was also most exposed to sunlight. Microclimate BRUCE was also heavily populated with weeds and grasses, much like microclimate NEMO, which was also located on a more level ground. Because BRUCE was exposed to the most sunlight its soil temperature was naturally the highest. The relative humidity of microclimate BRUCE was also relatively high compared to other microclimates. This is due to the level ground and heavy population of grass and weeds. The ground kept the previous rain water from running down the hill while the weeds and grasses that were low to the ground trapped the water. The dew point for BRUCE was the highest because it was the most exposed to sunlight. The light intensity was most apparently the highest because as mentioned before, BRUCE was the one microclimate that was completely open to sunlight. Microclimate BRUCE had a considerably lower temperature. This is because it was heavily populated by vegetation. Although it was exposed to the most sunlight, the vegetation in BRUCE countered the heat leaving the temperature not too low and not too high.

Microclimate DARLA: darla_close_up.png
Temp (⁰C)
Light Intensity (Lux)
Dew Point (⁰C)
Relative Humidity (%)
Absolute Humidity (g/m^3)
Soil Temp (⁰C)

This is microclimate DARLA. This microclimate is very similar to NEMO and is close proximity to it. Like NEMO, DARLA is at the bottom of the hill, and heavily populated by vegetation. Because it was much like microclimate NEMO, all the characteristics of DARLA are in close range. The soil temperature was low due to the fact that it was in a more shaded area. The relative humidity of DARLA was also considerably high in comparison to the other microclimates. This could be caused by the same reasons as microclimate NEMO. The runoff water washed off to the bottom of the hill and collected in DARLA. Also, the weeds and grasses could have trapped the water from evaporating or running even more. The dew point was lower because DARLA was located in a shaded area. As for light intensity, just like NEMO, we expected it to be lower than 170, based off it being located in the shade. We believe the same mistake occurred as when we were monitoring light for NEMO and we exposed the device to sunlight that did not belong to DARLA. Finally, the temperature of DARLA was 18.5, a rather low temperature. This was because microclimate DARLA was not exposed to as much sunlight.

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