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Name: Kirsti
Status:  student
Age: 9
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: 4/19/2004


Question:
How can I remove the chlorophyll from geranium leaves?


Replies:
Kirsti,

Acetone (available in most home centers) will extract chlorophyll and other plant pigments from your geranium leaves.

Do be aware, acetone is flammable -- do the extraction outdoors away from open flames. Try to not inhale the vapors -- a slight whiff won't harm you. Don't get it on your skin -- it will extract skin oils and will dry the skin quite a lot. Have an adult assist you and it's likely you'll have success. It's a good idea for you, and anyone helping you, to wear safety glasses -- inexpensive glasses are also available in the home center where you will find the acetone solvent.

Tear the leaves into small bits. Place them in a small (non-valuable) glass bowl -- don't use a plastic bowl because acetone can dissolve some kinds of plastic. Pour about a quarter cup of acetone onto the leaf fragments. Use the bottom of an old metal spoon the gently crush the leaf fragments while stirring the solution until you achieve a nice dark green liquid. Carefully pour off the liquid through a piece of cotton in order to achieve a clear dark green extract. Allow the cotton to air dry until it has no odor -- it's then safe to discard in the trash. When you're finished with your leaf extract, pour it onto a crumbled newspaper and allow it to stand outdoors until the acetone evaporates at which time it is safe to toss in the trash. Wash the bowl with detergent and water.

Good luck with your experiment.

Regards,
ProfHoff 841



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