Rainbow Flowers

I’ve been meaning to do this for ages. I could say here that it’s scientific, great learning for the kids blah, blah, blah, but honestly, I just wanted to do it because: PRETTY! The kids loved it. I loved it. It was fun.

  • Glasses
  • Food colouring
  • Water
  • White roses or carnations

I used green, yellow blue, red, and mixed a purple too. The purple colour didn’t work very well, but there still has a lilac shade to the petals (but it’s hard to see in the pics).

rainbow flowers

Colour change

At about the 6-8 hour mark, we could see a change. 

Coloured flowers

We left the flowers in the coloured water for 3 days, and then gathered them in a bunch to enjoy for another 3 days. 

Rainbow Flowers - colour change times

They really are so very pretty!

Rainbow Flowers

Rainbow Flowers

Rainbow Flowers

Rainbow Flowers

Rainbow Flowers

The Science

My husband is a scientific person, and he jotted down the science behind the process.

Plants have a system to transport water and nutrients (analogous to our vascular system), these are the xylem and phloem. The xylem are essentially microscopic tubes that primarily carries water (and some nutrients) from the roots of the plant to the leaves, this process is driven by the evaporation of water from the leaves (transpiration). Transpiration creates a pulling force (like sucking on a straw) and due to the properties of water and the very thin nature of the xylem the water is pulled up from the xylem tubes below. Food colouring that is dissolved in water is thus transported to the leaves and flowers of a plant.

For kids:

The xylem are like the plant’s blood vessels. They are like tiny pipes that run from to roots to the leaves and carry water and some food for the plants. If there is food colouring in the water it will travel with the water into the leaves and flowers.

Colour Palette – How Pretty

Rainbow flowers - colour palette - dusky pink, lime green, dusky blue, gold

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