The laser heated pedestal growth technique is presented as a fast and cost effective means of supplying small crystals for laser material evaluation. A simple method of preparing source rods to feed this crystal growth is described. High quality crystals of rare earth doped garnets are grown for laser induced fluorescence study. This results in a comprehensive study of energy kinetics in Tm:YAG and the determination of the microparameter CDA for cross relaxation of Tm3+.(3H4).© (1989) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.