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Grow a Crystal Garden at Home

A supersaturated solution of either salt or sugar will form crystals over a week or two.  Follow these simple directions to create mineral crystals, similar to those found in the earth.

Materials: a disposable clear clean jar, very hot water (but not boiling), salt or sugar, pencil, string, button, a spoon, and an observation journal


1.    Fill jar with hot water. 

2.    Slowly stir in salt or sugar until it will no longer dissolve. 

3.    Tie a pencil to one end of a string and a button to the other end. 

4.    Lower the button-end of the string into the solution until the pencil rests on top of the jar.

5.    Place the jar in a draft-free, quiet location for one to two weeks.

6.    Each day, observe the jar and record your observations in a journal. 

7.    Also, check daily for scum, which may collect on the water’s surface.  Using a spoon, clear away any scum, in order to promote evaporation.

In about one to two weeks, crystals will form on the string.