We have been trying to do this simple dyed flowers science experiment for the past year, but every time we tried it it never worked! I literally was pulling my hair out over this.  I mean this is an experiment that even a toddler could do, so why couldn’t we get it to work?  We tried many different ways and eventually it worked!  The important things to remember are: use really fresh white flowers, cut the stalks to as short as you can and use coloured ink rather than food colouring. The final time we did this, my youngest charge and I went out to M&S to choose some white flowers.  Back at home she helped me pick which inks to use. She really wanted to help cut the cartridges open but it was rather difficult and very messy.  This part is better left to the adult. Throughout the week she would check on them every time she came into the kitchen to see if they had changed colour. She was absolutely amazed at the transformation.  To her it was magic rather than science that caused the change.  Every time she comes home now she has a picked flower that she wants to put into coloured water.

To do this dyed flower science experiment  you will need:

  • White flowers (we used roses)
  • Knife
  • Coloured ink
  • Cup
  • Water

dyed flower science experiment

Cut the stem as short as you can.  In each cup add water and then add the coloured ink.  Place the flowers into the cup and place it somewhere where it will get plenty of light.


Although I had plenty of failures with this, you could use those failures as an experiment in itself; see what dyes the flowers better, does the length of the stem make any difference to up take of the colour, or does the type of flower make a difference.  You could also try cutting the stem in half and putting one side into one colour and the other side of the stem into a different colour.

dyed flower science experiment

This activity may help development of:

  • Scientific inquiry
  • Understanding of how plants absorb water

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Dyed flower science experiment -  a great kitchen science experiment for kids of all ages.