Properties of Matter

Roses are Blue

At home for 5-11 11-14

What you need

  • White carnation or similar
  • Vase
  • Water
  • Food colouring
  • Scissors


  1. Pour water into the vase and add a capful or two of food colouring
  2. Cut the end of the stem and place the flower in the coloured water
  3. Leave over night
  4. With another flower, try cutting carefully halfway up the middle of the stem and putting each half in differently coloured water

Results and Explanation

Capillary action forces the water up through the stem and into the petals. The food colouring shows the paths the water takes.

These experiments have not been specifically safety tested for home use but we believe them to be safe if the instructions are followed. Adult supervision or direction is recommended as appropriate. All experiments are carried out at your own risk.

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