Salt Crystal Garden





Introduction: Salt Crystal Garden

About: Working my dream job in the Telecom industry, so chances are, i'll never have time to respond to comments or messages, nothing personal.
Alright this is an old one. I learned this in grade school, they probably don't do it anymore because it involves dangerous chemicals like water. But it's fun for the kiddies.

Step 1: You Will Need

Laundry Bluing, getting hard to find, it's a suspension of Prussian Blue in water.
Salt (table)
Clear Household Ammonia
Toilet Paper Roll Core

Step 2: Procedure

Mix equal quantities of water, ammonia, salt, and laundry bluing together. Pour solution into a bowl and stand a tp roll in the bowl. Over the next 18-24 hours the crystals will form.

Step 3: Optional Steps

Optionally the cardboard, and subsequently the crystals can be colored with drops of food coloring.

Other porous materials can also be used such as terra cotta and coal (the traditional substrate).



    • Water Contest

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      Creative Misuse Contest

    62 Discussions


    7 months ago

    My question is this

    What is the role of aqueous Liquid bluing solution in crystalline growth?

    Is there a good alternative to it?

    I found Blue powder of it

    The powder should first be dissolved in water?

    If one figure a way to remove the paper medium without damaging the Xtals, one can build really nice lamps using this.

    Other crystalline substances can work too, both organic and mineral chemicals.

    where can i find the mrs stewart bluing, i'm from indonesia.

    I'm going to try it! It may be the one thing I can actually grow.

    I couldn't find Mrs. Stewarts Blueing, so I'm trying it with "RIT White Wash Bleach Alternative". Hopefully they're the same.

    3 replies

    wait, bleach?
    it's not actual bleach, right?
    because if it is mixing it with ammonia will make mustard gas, which is poisonous and will kill you

    I wonder what happened to alexwin. Hopefully it wasn't real bleach that he mixed with ammonia but that would explain why he never commented back on this.

    I tried this, but couldn't get it to work - I used "Bluette Laundry Bluing".  I couldn't find Mrs. Stewarts.  I used 2 T of each ingredient.  Can you tell me what I might do differently?

    3 replies

    I think it's the blueing. I looked at the MSDS and Bluette is Ultramarine blue, a sodium aluminum silicate compound, whereas Mrs Stewart's is Prussian Blue an iron compound.

    Turns out, you're right. I called the Mrs. Stewart's company and they told us they had tried the very same experiment on their competitors blueing and it doesn't work.  In other words, it HAS TO BE Mrs. Stewarts because of the requisite ingredients it contains. They offered a "Salt Crystal Garden" kit for $9.00.  Can be purchased on their website - Thanks for your quick response. 

    we did this at school but we added epsom salt and food coloring

    I remember doing this when I was in 1st grade! I had always wanted to do it again but could never remember. Thanks for posting! (: