Monday, 17 May 2010

Get Down and Boogie





Today I analysed my bean experiment results. Which scar orientation scored highest?



It's DOWN!!!

The "score" is like a school sports day. The winner gets 8 points, second 7,down to 1 for last place (but 0 for non finishers). If there's a dead heat for any positions the points allocated for each tied position are shared equally amongst the tied competitors. There were some non starters. All the pea beans failed(!) so my trial sample was down from 88 to 80. Six of those remaining failed. I've adjusted the average score for each orientation group to remove failures (as these might be down to other factors).



Still the Downs are the clear winners. In fact two of each other group failed, but none from Downs. So either Downs are clear winners, or less emphatic winners but less likely two fail. My view is that I have two reasons to sow my beans scar side down in future.

And in case you would like more detail here are the results in full (but needing magnification - just click on the picture)



Hope you enjoyed my little experiment. It was fun, but I'm relieved its over - and produced a result. (Anyone who knows enough about statistical significance is welcome to pick up the analysis for me.)

15 comments:

  1. Very nice. I didn't expect it to be as clear a margin of victory from first to last, but it appears that there was.
    I will follow your lead and try to plant my beans scar-side-down in the future. Seems that it will be worth the effort.

    Thanks for conducting and sharing this experiment :o)

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  2. Well I am going to totally take your word for it and not even enlarge the full results....from now on i will plant my beans scar side down....at least whilst I remember!!!

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  3. Well I never, a scientific breakthrough - I really didn't think there would be such a difference and if I had been trying for a winning bet I would never have chosen down! From now on I will be planting beans scar side down.

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  4. A turning point for me Mal, scar side down from now on! That's some analysis, I think I did less work on my honours dissertation, "A magnetic mineral and geochemical study of Bar Mere, Cheshire", a good grounding for a career in Finance!

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  5. Science was never my strong point at school, so I'll just take your word for it and sow scar side down in future.

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  6. An interesting result; I've done all my beans for the year, but if I have space might try to replicate your results!

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  7. So when are you publishing your report on Gardeners World?

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  8. If only you had published these BEFORE I sowed all my beans on Saturday morning!

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  9. A Nobel prize is surely a mere matter of time.
    I salute you, Sir!

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  10. Excellent, will follow your lead in future, bit too late for this year!

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  11. Gee thanks folks!

    And I agree with Iggy about replication. Next year I plan to sow the same number but sow half 'down' (the best) and the other half 'vertical' (the worst). The bigger sample size should ensure random variation doesn't impact on the result. The prediction will be a very clear difference. But that's for when I've collected some more seed.

    I can't help speculating that the 'down' position did best because it has 'the best drainage' for the germinating bean and stops excess water gathering - and rot setting in during cold spells. But that really is idle speculation.

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  12. Wow! I never realised it would make any difference. Looks pretty clear cut to me though.

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  13. Interesting experiment. I just drop mine in the hole or trench. MAybe they drop down scar side down, I don't know, but I usually have pretty decent germination-apart from some runty ones. I will be more careful in future.

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  14. Hey, I'm not a veg fascist. There are clearly other more important factors than orientation, Temperature, humidity, fertility to name a few that spring to mind. Most of us will readily settle for 10% loss of sown seed. I more than decimate my lettuce when thinning after all! So don't worry about which way up you sow your beans - but all the same, if you want that 'extra edge', all other things excluded, you might, like me, just pay that extra bit of attention to which way up they go in!

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  15. This is a fascinating experiment. I always fret about which way up I'm sowing them but I'm just not disciplined enough to conduct a study like this!

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