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Growing Crystals Using Monoammonium Phosphate-How To Make Lovely Crystals In Your Home

I really enjoy growing Crystals using monoammonium phosphate. It's a fun family activity as well as a fascinating scientific experiment. You may grow crystals that are lovely ones out of sugar, alum, or even table salt.

However, one of the simplest and most beautiful crystals to grow is a regular fertilizer. It's called mono ammonium phosphate (MAP), and it provides nitrogen to plants.

MAP is inexpensive, non-toxic, and grows into magnificent crystal clusters under the appropriate conditions. In fact, it's a common element in crystal growing kits. Surprisingly, these crystals are also industrially manufactured and have military and space applications (more on that later).

There are several internet methods for growing crystals, but none of them go into great detail or show you just how beautiful these crystals may be.

Monoammonium Phosphate Crystal Structure

Growing Crystals using monoammonium phosphate is a common thing in crystal growing kits because it is safe, dependable, and produces crystals quickly. Monoammonium phosphate crystals can be grown without the use of a kit.

Clear needles or spikes resembling quartz crystals occur as a result of the chemical. With a little food coloring and careful monitoring of the growing circumstances, rectangular green crystals like emeralds emerge.

Transparent homegrown needle-shaped crystal in a hand
Transparent homegrown needle-shaped crystal in a hand

"I love growing crystals at home, and it's surprising how many household chemicals can form beautiful crystals.

The crystal pictured above is made from a fertilizer called mono ammonium phosphate (MAP), commonly used to supply plants with nitrogen. MAP is cheap, non-toxic, and forms beautiful crystals easily.

Since I couldn't afford to buy beautiful minerals as a kid, finding out I could grow my own crystals is like a dream come true. Hopefully, you guys found it interesting!"

-crystalchase21 (Reddit)

How Do You Make Crystals With Monoammonium Phosphate?

The concept of growing a crystal is straightforward. Soak the MAP powder in water until saturated. Wait a day for seed crystals to develop before harvesting them. Place the seed crystals in a larger container and allow them to grow.

This article will walk you through each step.

Materials

You will need the following materials to grow crystals:

MAP fertilizer packet

A vessel in which to dissolve the powder

A jar in which the crystals will grow A filter funnel/coffee filter

A bit of thread/fishing line

A tiny plate

A fork

A pencil

Monoammonium phosphate (MAP) is available in gardening stores as a fine white powder. It is also known as ammonium dihydrogen phosphate at times (ADP). If you can't find it locally, you can get it online.

The amount of MAP required is determined by the size of the crystal you wish to create. 500g is sufficient to grow a palm-sized crystal. In theory, there is no limit to how big they can grow if you have enough solution and a large enough container.

MAP is salt in the technical sense. It dissolves in water similarly to table salt. About 40 g of MAP can be dissolved in 100 mL of water at room temperature. Hot water has a greater ability to dissolve.

Let's get this party started.

  • To begin, boil some water.
  • 60 g of MAP should be dissolved in every 100 mL of water.
  • Stir until the powder is completely dissolved. You don't have to use a beaker as they do.
  • To remove dust and contaminants, strain the solution into a jar using a coffee filter.
  • After then, allow the solution to cool. The solution will be ready once it has cooled.
  • Now we want to start generating little crystals that will act as "seeds" for larger crystals to form in the future.
  • To begin, add a pinch of MAP powder to the solution and vigorously agitate it.
  • You should notice a lot of extra crystalline dust developing after about 30 seconds. This is exactly what they're looking for.
  • After that, leave the jar alone for a couple of hours.

When you return, you'll notice that the dust has crystallized! There may also be some tiny crystals floating on the solution's surface.

How Long Does It Take To Grow Crystals At Home?

Because crystals take 1-4 days to grow, you'll need a place where they can sit for several days without being disturbed by youngsters or dogs. A warm, dry climate is required: Many crystals develop quicker in a warm, dry environment that favors evaporation, an important factor in crystal growth.

Sky-colored home-grown crystal
Sky-colored home-grown crystal

Conclusion

One of our favorite things is growing Crystals using monoammonium phosphate. They're a fantastic STEAM project that kids like doing again and again. Growing crystals is always fascinating and exciting, from lovely, shining crystal wreath ornaments to spooky crystal spiders and ghosts for Halloween. Not only did we want to produce cool crystals, but we also wanted to figure out what variables would allow us to grow REALLY BIG CRYSTALS!

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