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Explorers develop soilless media to plant cucumber seeds (Part 2)

Last month we shared an exciting blog about what our Explorers are doing this term as part of their Exploratory science project. Students across four towns (Accra, Pokuase, Nsawam and Berekuso) developed soilless media to grow cucumber seeds.

After 10 days of monitoring, here are some observations made by Explorers of Pokuase Methodist 1 and Osaebo JHS

  1. Seeds germinated two days after planting but at different times for all 7 setups.
  2. The height of the seedlings increased in centimeters daily.
  3. The leaves of the seedlings grew bigger daily.
  4. The leaves of the seedling turned pale yellow because of the absence of sunlight.
  5. Worms were found in one of the setups because houseflies settled on it.
  6. All the seedlings had slender stems because of etiolation.
Explorers taking measurement of the seedlings planted in soilless media on day 10

Here are steps you can follow to create your own soilless medium at home.

Materials: Hand gloves, coconut coir (fibrous husk), sawdust, dried plantain bark,  cucumber seeds, water, measuring rule and empty containers.


  1. Half-fill a container with coconut coir, sawdust and dried plantain bark.
  2. Soak enough water in the set up and allow it to settle overnight.
  3. Plant the cucumber seeds (a maximum of ten seeds) in the set-up.
  4. Keep the setup in a cool, dry and dark condition.
  5. Collect data on the number of seed germinations on Day 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 of planting, height of germinating seedlings and number of growing roots.
  6. Record your observations every day and add water when necessary to the setup.