Create a plant collection science experiment | Fizzics Education

Create a plant collection

Create a plant collection

Follow FizzicsEd 150 Science Experiments:

You will need:

Old newspapers and a scrap book.

Samples of plants from your backyard – include flowers as well!

Corrugated cardboard

Heavy books, e.g. phone books

Create a plant collection - materials needed
1 Create a plant collection - Flora of the Sydney region field guide

Use a plant ID book to identify the plants in your garden. Include Australian natives and exotics.

2 Create a plant collection - flower and leaves

Pick flowers, leaves and stems from each tree. Try to keep the leaves and flowers on the stems.

3 Create a plant collection - newspaper on cardboard

Place a piece of cardboard on the floor, with a sheet of newspaper covering it.

4 Create a plant collection - plant on newspaper

Now place one plant specimen onto the newspaper, with notes on what plant it is.

5 Create a plant collection - adding a second cardboard sheet

Place another sheet of newspaper over the plant material and then cover with a cardboard sheet.

6 Create a plant collection - many layers of cardboard and newspaper

Repeat this process, for all of your plant specimens – making a plant sandwich!

7 Create a plant collection - plant press using books as weights

Finishing with a cardboard sheet, place as many heavy books on top to make a ‘plant press’.


Change the paper every 1 – 2 days. After 1 – 2 months the plants will be flat and dry

Why Does This Happen

Preserving plant material is a major responsibility for botanic gardens around the world.

There are ‘type specimens’ that go back over 200 years in some cases. A ‘type specimen’ is the first specimen first identified as an example of a unique species from which all other comparisons to that species are taken.

Learn more!


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