How to Grow Crystal Spikes in the Sun

Easy Crystal You Can Grow Instantly

Epsom salt crystals needles grow in a matter of hours. You can grow clear or colored crystals.
Anne Helmenstine

Most crystals take days or weeks to form. Use this technique if you have a sunny day and want crystals FAST!

Crystal Spike Materials

You only need a few basic materials for this project. While black construction paper is recommended, any dark, heavy-bodied paper will work. The paper needs to be porous enough to absorb enough liquid to produce visible crystals.

  • Black construction paper
  • Pie or cake pan
  • Warm water
  • Epsom salt
  • Scissors

Grow the Crystals

  1. First, a sunny day isn't required, but it will help! You want rapid evaporation of the water to form the crystals, so select a warm, dry place to grow crystals (sunny porch or window is great).
  2. Use the scissors to cut black (or another dark color) construction paper so that it will fit in the bottom of the pan.
  3. Add 1 tablespoon of Epsom salt to 1/4 cup warm water. Stir until the salt is dissolved.
  4. Put the construction paper in the pan and pour the salt solution over the paper.
  5. Put the pan in the place you have selected for crystal-growing. As the water evaporates, you'll see lots of spiky crystals.
  6. Have fun! Use a magnifying glass to see your creations up-close.

Useful Tips

  1. This is one of the fastest, least toxic methods of growing crystals. You can substitute regular salt for Epsom, but the resulting crystals won't be as exciting.
  2. Wash your hands after handling Epsom salts. Don't drink the solution and avoid spilling it on yourself.
  3. Experiment with adding water colors or food color to the salt solution.
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Your Citation
Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "How to Grow Crystal Spikes in the Sun." ThoughtCo, Aug. 25, 2020, Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2020, August 25). How to Grow Crystal Spikes in the Sun. Retrieved from Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "How to Grow Crystal Spikes in the Sun." ThoughtCo. (accessed June 10, 2023).