The Laurel School Board heard from two incoming freshmen about their project on how humic acid affects tomato plants during their August school board meeting. The board also heard from Laurel’s Finance Director, Monet Smith, about the current year’s budget.
“These two students, freshman Brayden Hearn and Aidan Bell have done quite a bit of work on their project they presented at the state convention for Future Farmers of America (FFA),” said Sara Ruggiero, FFA advisor. “The project was done last school year while in the middle school and they intend to continue their research this year. They will be attending the regional and national conventions to present their work.”
“Our project was named ‘Plant yield benefits with the addition of humic acid on tomatoes,’ said Hearn. “We were looking for the positive or negative effects to help farmers to increase the growth of the crops. This could help produce more fruit to reduce hunger in the world. The farmers have used this type of technique in Russia and Scandinavia and have good results with no bad effects.”
Hearn’s partner in the project, Aidan Bell, added, “We kept a notebook of all of our research. We used tomato plants, water containers and pots to set up the experiment. We used the scientific method to set up the project about the use of humic acid helping to expand the growth of the fruit on the plants. We found that our hypothesis was supported by our results.”
Hearn continued, “We had four groups of plants, one with no treatment, one with standard fertilizer, one with low grade humic acid treatment and one with a high dose of acid and fertilizer. We found several mistakes we made and will correct them this year. They had to do with the way we put the fertilizer on the plants, and we needed to use larger pots for the plants. Our conclusions showed plants tend to produce more fruit with the use of the humic acid. We also next year want to take tissue samples of the plants and have them tested to see how much fertilizer we need to help the plants.”
All of the board members applauded the work the students did and look forward to seeing the results of the next stage of the project.
Members of the board reported they were excited about the new school year and have been very impressed with turnouts so far for events at the schools.
Superintendent Dr. Shawn Larrimore commented on the first Red/White football scrimmage held. “I want to thank all involved with the night. It was a great time tailgating before the scrimmage with the community coming out to support the team and the schools. I hope to see that many people at our first home game.”
Smith reported the district is in good financial shape for the upcoming school year. Tax bills have gone out and collections will start to be received in October. She also presented the district financial position report which needs to be submitted to the state.
The report shows that the district can handle payroll in case there is a financial emergency with the district. Smith told the board Laurel meets all the requirements from the state.