Chromosome painting, that is visualisation of chromosome segments or whole chromosomes based on fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with chromosome-specific DNA probes is widely used for chromosome studies in mammals, birds, reptiles and insects. Attempts to establish chromosome painting in euploid plants have failed so far. Here, we report on chromosome painting in Arabidopsis thaliana (n = 5, 125 Mb C(-1)). Pools of contiguous 113-139 BAC clones spanning 2.6 and 13.3 Mb of the short and the long arm of chromosome 4 (17.5 Mb) were used to paint this entire chromosome during mitotic and meiotic divisions as well as in interphase nuclei. The possibility of identifying any particular chromosome region on pachytene chromosomes and within interphase nuclei using selected BACs is demonstrated by differential labelling. This approach allows us, for the first time, to paint an entire autosome of an euploid plant to study chromosome rearrangements, homologue association, interphase chromosome territories, as well as to identify homeologous chromosomes of related species.