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Experiment with Colors

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Grow Your Own Crystals

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Grow Your Own Crystals

Materials Needed
  • Hot tap water
  • Glass jar
  • Alum (found in the baking section)
  • Spoon
  • String
  • Stick or pencil
  1. Fill a glass jar 3/4 full with hot tap water.

  2. Stir in a spoonful of potash of alum.

  3. Keep adding alum until no more will dissolve into the water.

  4. Once no more will dissolve, the water has become saturated with alum. This is called a solution.

  5. Allow the solution to sit for two days.

  6. Drain the solution through a strainer into a another container.

  7. Save the water and the crystals.

The crystals formed as the water evaporated. Because the solution was saturated, when water evaporated, there was no place for the alum to go, so it formed crystals.

The water is still saturated and so if you suspend a crystal from a string in the water, the suspended crystal will grow as the water evaporates. To try this, tie a string around a crystal and tie the other end of the string around a stick. Set the stick on top of the jar and allow the crystal to hang down in the the solution. Watch over the next few days as the water evaporates and the crystal grows.

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