Set Up: Framing an Experiment

Yesterday my alarm went off at 3:10. I was not going to Yuma, rather I was bound for Spartansburg, PA to set up a soil remediation experiment. Spartansburg is in Sparta Township (Athens Township is nearby, the two townships did not appear to be at war), so I had to resist the temptation to say “This is Sparta!” the entire time I was there.

The main tasks for the day were planting 504 fir transplants (Fraser, Canaan, and Nordmann), setting up a weather station, collecting soil samples, and installing water marks. I had two helpers (Dave and Retha), and they were great–willing to put up with an early start and a late finish to the day.

Conditions were perfect for field work.

The field of firs.

I am very happy to have the experiment set up. That resolves a loose end that had been troublesome for the past month.

Now, after a month of desperately wanting it to stop raining in Sparta, I want it to rain again. I’m also hoping the firs decide to survive in patterns that are statistically significant.


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