My favorite science experiments are the ones that can help answer some of Anna’s questions, and she has a lot of them. On one of the hottest day of the year she suddenly exclaimed while taking a sip of water from her water bottle, How do plants drink, mama? They have no mouth!
I asked her what plants do have and she remembered the roots. We talked for a while about how flowers get both food they need and water they drink from the roots. Then I remembered about colored water experiment that I saw on several blogs before and set it up at home. We didn’t have carnations, so I cut some white flower from the bush that we have in front of the house – maybe someone can even tell me what those flowers are :) I set up two glasses – one with clear water and one with about 10 drops of blue food coloring added in and asked Anna to predict what would happen. She predicted that the flowers in blue water will not do well at all. I was wondering if both sets will die off overnight, because flowers appeared to be on their last leg, but I was pleased (and Anna was amazed) to see them still there in the morning looking somewhat colored.
I explained to her that flowers drank water from the glass and water traveled all the way to the petals and that cut flowers eventually die since they don’t get nutrients that they need from Mother Earth. Anna exclaimed, Wait, mama, Earth is not their mother. The bush with roots is their mother, and Earth is their father! Maybe this experiment will make her think twice whether to pick flowers to satisfy her momentary lust, but I am not holding my breath.
For more science experiments for young kids, visit Science Sunday at Adventures in Mommydom.