Hello, and welcome to Gardening with Ms. Kate, a blog where I teach a new element of gardening! Back in April, I thought it would be a cool idea to conduct an experiment with our plants, where we let them listen to music (any type) to see if it affected their growth in any way. In this session, I will show you my results and break down what happened! Without any further ado, let’s get growing! Get it?? Let’s get growing? Ah, anyway! 

Here was my plant shelf at the beginning of the month; we have a tradescantia, a variety of philodendron, and other hanging plants. 

And here is my shelf today!

Look at all that green. Too bad money doesn’t grow on plants, right? So, for a month, I played show tunes (songs from musicals, harkening to my theater kid roots), and it looks like they weren’t affected negatively! There was a lot of growth that I noted, especially with my Philodendron Micans in the middle right. The music may have enriched the photosynthesizing process for my plants (try to say that five times fast), but what could have also been a factor was that plants come out of dormancy in spring. Dormancy is the equivalent of hibernation for animals, where plants reserve their energy during the colder months to survive. With the experiment starting in May, it was the perfect time for plants to wake up and resume growing, which we see in the second picture.

There were some plants I also had to move around because of the lighting. My String of Hearts, all though they are beautiful, are not getting enough light to process energy. I had to shift them, which added another element that music could not affect, the lighting needs for photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is the act of plants soaking up sunlight from their leaves and processing that energy as food. Music does not provide sustenance for this, so I couldn’t hope the Sound of Music with Julie Andrews could assist with the experiment, even though Mrs. Andrews’ voice is beautiful. Hi Julie! If you’re reading this, I’m a big fan! 

So, in conclusion, did music help our leafed friends grow more? I do not believe so for this exercise, but it didn’t make it less fun! What could we do to see if the music does affect our plants? Well, we could try focus groups where plants have different genres with the same light settings. Or we could set the experiment at different times when the plants are not preparing for or waking up from dormancy. For example, we could set it for the Summer, when they are already chugging along with their little green selves! 

I hope you have enjoyed this experiment as much as I have, and until the next session, happy gardening, gang!

For more information about plants, click here