Elizabeth R. Cornish | Joplin High School |
Romaine lettuce (Lactuca sativa var. longifolia) is commonly recalled due to outbreaks of Escherichia coli (E. coli). E. coli contamination can prove fatal with an average of 100 deaths yearly. Garlic (Allium sativum) has been shown to be an effective treatment against E. coli but has not been tested on E. coli in lettuce. This project tested the effectiveness of different applications of garlic oil in eliminating E. coli by applying garlic oil to lettuce plants and observing whether or not E. coli was still present by using Eosin-Methylene Blue agar plates. The three application methods for the garlic oil onto the plants were water, soil, and topical. The results of the experiment came back inconclusive, with none of the plates, including the control group, having observable signs of E. coli. This project aimed to provide an alternative way of lettuce decontaminating.