Purpose of a Punnett's Square
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Purpose of a Punnett's Square

A punnett's square is a technique that was created to help aid in determining the probability outcomes of various physical characteristics. To aid in generating a simple punnett square that focuses on the probability outcome of just one trait, this article serves as a tutorial. In this case, this punnet square practice is based on determining the color outcome of cross pollinating two flowers.

Did you ever wonder if it was ever possible to determine the physical characteristics of a pretty flower's offspring? Perhaps you may have wanted to give yourself a uniformed garden of all pink and red flowers. This can be done by cross-pollinating two flowers. In order to do this, you must take the pollen of one flower and place it on the stigma of another. Once this is done, a tool that can help you determine the possible physique outcomes of the flowers is a punnett's square. A punnett square is based on the genetic codes of living things that encode for various phenoytypes- these are the physique determining factors of the flowers. In order to compose a punnett square, you need to label individual traits of the flower as dominant or recessive homozygous/ heterozygous. Dominant homozygous traits are traits that show up in a huge majority amongst the flowers (i.e pure red petals). They are represented by two capital letters (i.e; DD) Recessive traits are characteristics that only show up in a few of the flowers and are represented by two lower case letters (i.e dd). Often times, you will run across various traits that aren't exactly the majority or the minority of traits, they may be just below or above being just that. These traits are considered to be heterozygous and are often represent by one capital letter and one lower case letter (i.e Dd). Once an individual trait has been assigned to each parent plant, a punnett square can be generated.

         First, you must draw a box with four squares. Above the top two squares, you must write one letter of the parent trait above each of the two boxes. Then, next to the two boxes on the left hand side, write one letter of the second parent’s trait beside each of the two boxes. At your first square at the top left hand corner, write in the letters that intersect at that square; the letter from direct above the square and the letter directly to the left of that square. Repeat the process for the remaining three squares. Once each square has two letters within them, you can now determine what the majority or minority physiques of your flowers will be if you cross two specific flowers. The majority physical traits that appear is what is most likely to appear when the two selected flowers are cross pollinated. 

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