First off you need some basic supplies:
- an oven, generally comes with houses
- a weigh scale, nothing too fancy should be accurate to one tenth of a gram, e.g This digital scale from Amazon
- an old plastic bottle you don't care about, not too large (I used a 150mL one)
- a pan, for resting the plates on and for putting in the oven.
- a mortar and pestle, larger ones are easier to work with than smaller ones
- a syringe, 10cc minimum, plastic works fine, I got mine from Home Depot
- glass slides, you can also use sheets of tin or plastic, basically anything stiff that won't interact with water
Then you need your "chemicals" for preparing the slides:
- Anhydrous Calcium Sulfate, a.k.a. Plaster of Paris, I liberated mine from an artsy friend
- Water, from the tap, or distilled if impurities are an issue
- Silica Gel - This is the desiccant in those little packets you find in medicine bottles and assorted what-nots.
Silica Gel is hygroscopic, and its fine particles can be harmful if inhaled. It is not a bad idea to wear gloves and a mask while grinding this stuff.
The final materials are needed for constructing a developing chamber and developing slides of plant pigments:
- a mason jar with lid. it should be just taller than the glass slides such that you could prop a slide up in it easily
- filter paper, you can also use sturdy sketch paper, I use 10mm filter paper
- eye dropper or pasteur pipette
- acetone 50mL
- hexane 50mL
- a pencil
- a graduate cylinder
- some leaves, from which to extract the chlorophylls and xanthophylls
- clean sand for grinding with, mine is from the beach.
When using organic solvents ensure appropriate safety measures are in place. Such as proper ventilation, safety glasses, &c. If you are unsure as to what constitutes appropriate safety you shouldn't be messing with organic solvents.