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Southwest Wisconsin Technical College needed a visual aid for their agronomy and plant pathology classes. Rather than simply showing students pictures of nutrient deficient alfalfa, they wanted to offer a three-dimensional view of crop nutrition. So we created these alfalfa replicas showing nutrient deficiency effects.
The alfalfa set included two plants. One showed the macronutrient deficiencies of phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, sulfur, and calcium. The other displays the boron micronutrient deficiency, as well as leafhopper damage. That way, students get a look at several of the most important nutrient deficiencies and learn how to recognize the signs of alfalfa’s most common insect pest.
The leaves of the alfalfa nutrient deficiency models are painted and sculpted by hand. The plant models are enclosed in a removable clear plastic case that is attached to the base with thumbscrews. When the case is in place, the lightweight display can be easily transported using the handle at the top of the case.