As a solid state chemist, I've done suprisingly little crystal growth from solution at temperatures under 100 oC. (I've also never taken an inorganic chemistry laboratory course; there wasn't one offered at my undergraduate institution. I've run across a few paper that talks about layering solvents - a 1:1 ethanol:water solution containing the ligand was layered over an aqueous solution containing the metal source. I'd like to give the reaction a try. Having never done this, I thought that I could do this reaction in a small vial. A postdoc in the lab that I'm working in thought that you needed to do this in a thin tube (he has no experience with layering reactions either).
Could anyone provide some advice on growing crystals via layering?