Here’s a great STEM experiment you can make with your kids–a Soda Bottle Green House! Yes, you can put an entire ECOSYSTEM in a soda bottle and watch it grow! How cool is that?
This post was made possible by my pals at Monsanto, who’ve put together these awesome Science Camp kits for bloggers! Everything in the experiment can be done with common household objects, so you can play along too!
Make a Soda Bottle Green House
Supplies you will need:
- Two 2-liter soda bottles
- Scissors or Razor Knife
- Permanent Marker
- Wicks–from the candle making area of a craft store
- Vice Grips
- Seeds–something small, like herbs
- safety glasses
First, wash out the soda bottles, then use a Permanent Marker to make your cut lines. You will need to cut the TOP off one bottle, about 3/4 inch (or 2 cm) from the curve of the bottle.
Cutting the bottles should be done–or at least started by a grown up.
This bottle is your reservoir, where the water will be stored. The top is the lid of the Soda Bottle Green House
Next, you’ll need to mark and cut the second bottle. Draw a line about half an inch — or 1 cm — above the bottle’s hip (that’s the bottom curve). This is the planter, the bottom is scrap.
When Mitch and I did this the first time, we got a little mixed up on which bit was what…and actually got our lid and planter reversed! I know…silly huh? Our Soda Bottle Green House turned out to be more like BioSphere 2, ’cause I don’t know how we’re getting into that planter again without a knife! Oops! So you don’t make the same mistake, I cut a second set of soda bottles and labeled them for you…
You’ll need to put a hole in one of the bottle caps. Use the vice grips to hold the cap and a drill to put a hole in the cap. Obviously, this is an adult’s job.
Once you have a hole in cap, soak two wick in water and thread them through the hole. Put the bottle cap on the planter bottle.
Pour water into the reservoir, the place the planter–wicks down–into the reservoir.
Add soil to the planter, making sure the wicks are in the middle of the dirt, and not up against the sides of the bottle.
Plant your seeds!
Give the seeds some more water and place the lid on the planter.
Now put your soda bottle greenhouse in a sunny window and wait for the results!
Note: We did this project again with smaller bottles and this time added a fairy farmer out of clay!