Wikijunior:Big Book of Fun Science Experiments/Make a colorful flower

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This is an experiment that allows you to see how plants use water. You will turn a white flower into a colourful one! You can use one flower, or you can do this with more flowers and make each a different colour.

Safety[edit | edit source]

As with all experiments, ask an adult before you begin. The food colouring used in this experiment can stain clothes, counters and skin so you should wear an apron and be very careful with it.

The Experiment[edit | edit source]

What You'll Need[edit | edit source]

  • 1 white carnation flower with a long stem.
  • 1 vase or tall glass or cup.
  • food dye: red, green or blue work best.
  • water

How to Do It[edit | edit source]

  1. Fill the vase or cup about half way up with water.
  2. Put 3-4 drops of food dye into the water so it is quite colourful. Careful! Food colouring stains clothes, counters and skin.
  3. Put the white carnation stem down in the water.
  4. Come back in two to four hours. What do you observe has changed?
  5. Come back in a day (24 hours). Now what has happened?

Why Does This Happen?[edit | edit source]

All plants draw water up from the soil through their stems. Your carnation, even though it has been picked, is still doing this to keep its petals fresh. As it draws up coloured water, the coloured water is being used in the white petals and the colour in the water can been seen.

Activities[edit | edit source]

  • Draw pictures of the observations you made at 2 hours and a day later. Label the stem and the petals in your drawing.