population variation at seven days

Inheritance and Genetics: Observing Variation and Measuring Selection in Fast Plants

Variation is a fundamental attribute of life; understanding its nature is important to all. Wisconsin Fast Plants are an ideal model for teaching this concept, with easily observable variation in many plant traits. This variation can be observed, described, and measured or quantified to gain greater understanding of plant traits. Development of selection experiments allows analysis of recorded data and measuring …

genetics phenotypes inheritance

Inheritance and Genetics: Understanding Patterns of Inheritance in Fast Plants

Wisconsin Fast Plants are an ideal model organism for observing and learning about inheritance patterns! Monohybrid and Dihybrid crosses demonstrate Mendelian patterns while other genetic stocks provide opportunity for observing cytoplasmic traits and developing of selection experiments. What inheritance patterns are observable in Fast Plants? Mendelian traits: monohybrid cross this investigation focuses on the genetics of the plant stem color trait     Mendelian …

Fast Plants were developed through conventional breeding; they are not genetically engineered plants

Are Wisconsin Fast Plants Genetically Engineered Plants?

Simply stated, Wisconsin Fast Plants are not genetically engineered plants. Rather, Fast Plants are the result of over 30 years of ordinary plant breeding that continues, today. This plant breeding began in about 1974, using the same ways of doing things that people have used for at least 10,000 years to tame/control and improve crops for human use (p. 65). In other words, …

counting-hairs

Counting Leaf Hairs on Fast Plants for Selection Experiments

Hairs are not often a trait that we associate with plants. However, of all the traits that students might observe in a population of Fast Plants, we can learn a lot about variation and natural selection by counting and selecting for the number of hairs on a leaf margin. Selective breeding to increase (or decrease) hairiness can provide an excellent opportunity …