Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
4 ratings

Tuesday - October 18, 2005

From: Philadelphia, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: General Botany
Title: Smarty Plants on temperature
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Mr.Smarty Plants, I am a student at Hill Freedman Middle school and I have a science fair coming up. I really need a answer to this question "What effect does temperature have on the growth of plants?". Please help me!

ANSWER:

This is a very broad question with many aspects to its answer. Temperature has an effect on germination of seeds, plant growth, and flowering. It affects photosynthesis, respiration and transpiration of the plant. There are also other factors that work in concert with temperature to affect the growth of plants; for instance, available sunlight and water, daylength, soil compostion, etc. Although, in general, warm temperatures enhance growth and cold temperatures inhibit growth, optimum growth temperatures vary for different plants. Some plants (cool season plants) such as cabbage and broccoli grow best with cool nights and mild days; whereas, warm season plants such as tomatoes and peppers grow best with mild nights and warmer days. Many plants require several weeks below a critical temperature in order to grow in the spring. You can read about critical temperatures for growth of several crop plants.

You can also read more about the effects of temperature on plant growth in a PDF file, "Plant Growth Factors: Temperature", that you can download from Colorado State University Cooperative Extension. North Carolina State University Cooperative Extension also has an article, "Temperature Effect on Plants" that you might find helpful.
 

More General Botany Questions

What is white sticky substance in the Mandevilla vine?
June 15, 2012 - When I was watering my Mandevilla one of the vines broke and there was a white, sticky substance that came out of the vine. I was just curious as to what that is.
view the full question and answer

What does spp. stand for in Paspalum spp? From Arlington, TX.
August 11, 2010 - What does the spp stand for when talking about Paspalum spp?
view the full question and answer

Yellowing of palm tree leaves
May 14, 2008 - I want to know about palm trees. The leaves are turning yellow.
view the full question and answer

What caused purple heartwood in my Tuliptree?
June 15, 2009 - My Tulip tree was hit by lightning and all bark from the base of the tree up to 50 feet was blown off. The tree also sustained a significant crack through the trunk. When the tree was cut down, we...
view the full question and answer

Beans growing under artificial light from Vernon CT
May 04, 2012 - What bean plant will grow the best under a flourescent,spot gro light,green transparent light,or Natural light and why.What caused it to grow like it did?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.