Writing with Scientists

Mali’o, Hawaii
Grade 7, Age 12

Mali’o’s report about the effects of Kahili ginger won a 2005 Young Naturalist Award.

Here Mali’o explains how outside factors may have affected her results.


The Effect of Hedychium gardnerianum on the Surrounding Soil and Native Flora in Volcano, Hawaii

There were some uncontrolled variables that may have affected this study. The positioning of my experimental plots, for example, may have influenced my data. If the four plots had been directly adjacent to each other, which they were not, the tree cover overhead would have been more similar, as would the amount of rainfall. The rain in Volcano is very much affected by eruptions from Kilauea and therefore most likely contains some acid. If the plots had been close together, the amount of acid rain received would have been more consistent. The level of available sunlight would also have been more consistent. And if the plots had been all in one place, they would have been easier for me to access, and I might have been able to take more data samples from them.

Learn more about Mali’o and her report.