Flower Forensics


Has a rare, black orchid been illegally cloned?

The owner of a local flower store has asked you to investigate a possible crime: the theft and illegal cloning of his prized black orchids.

  • Collect and analyze data to compare a rare black orchid with three suspicious black orchids.
  • Compare orchid structures using diagrams of the four orchid flowers.
  • Perform simulations of chromatography of plant pigments, enzyme assays, restriction enzyme digestion and gel electrophoresis.
Assembled kits
Materials to assemble 10 kits
Materials to refill 10 kits - includes all supplies, printed labels, and student instructions copy master

Kit Includes

  • Student instructions
  • Diagrams of orchids
  • Simulated “Electrophoresis Gel”
  • DNA Strips
  • Genetic code chart
  • 4 samples of simulated “Orchid flower extracts”
  • 4 labeled droppers
  • Chemical X Test Strip
  • 1 tube of simulated “Chemical X Indicator Powder”
  • 1 mini-scoop
  • 1 plastic cup
  • Chromatography paper
  • 1 pencil

Also Required

  • Scissors
  • Transparent tape
  • Water
  • Safety goggles

Quantity Discounts


  • 1 – 9 kits: $17.95 each
  • 10 – 24 kits: $17.05 each
  • 25+ kits: $16.16 each


  • 1 – 9 packs: $117.95 each
  • 10+ packs: $112.05 each


  • 1 – 9 packs: $60.95 each
  • 10+ packs: $57.90 each

Correlation to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) Shop by NGSS »

Performance Expectations:

MS-LS3-2. Develop and use a model to describe why asexual reproduction results in offspring with identical genetic information and sexual reproduction results in offspring with genetic variation.

  • Science & Engineering Practices

    Analyzing and Interpreting Data - Analyze data using tools, technologies, and/or models (e.g., computational, mathematical) in order to make valid and reliable scientific claims or determine an optimal design solution

  • Disciplinary Core Ideas

    LS1.B: Growth and Development of Organisms Organisms reproduce, either sexually or asexually, and transfer their genetic information to their offspring.

    LS3.A: Inheritance of Traits - DNA carries instructions for forming species’ characteristics.

  • Crosscutting Concepts

    Patterns - Students identify similarities and differences in order to sort and classify natural objects and designed products.