Written by Abbie Stutzer
By now your home garden is thriving. Every night you harvest lettuce and herbs by the armful, and those heirloom tomato seeds you carefully picked out and started are beginning to take form. Everything looks beautiful – except for those makeshift garden markers you stuck in the ground haphazardly. You were in such a hurry to plant your seed starts that when you marked the budding greens, you didn't use a lot of creativity. Remedy this oversight by getting imaginative and embarking on a fun garden project – design a handful of DIY garden markers.
- A letter and number stamp set.
- A hammer.
- While working on a hard surface, hold stamp over spoon.
- Carefully hammer spoon until stamp has left an impression.
- Polymer clay.
- Aluminum floral wire.
- Clay text embossing set, or skewer (to make designs).
- Parchment paper lined baking sheet (to “cook” the clay on).
- A pasta machine (to press, shape the clay. You can also knead it like bread).
- Cookie cutters (to make shapes).
- Acrylic paint and clear acrylic coating (for coloring, designing the DIY plant markers).
- Condition the clay (knead or press in pasta machine).
- Roll out dough to 1/8” – 1/4” thickness.
- Form the clay in any shape you’d like and imprint plant, flower descriptions.
- Place hole at the top of the marker for the metal wire.
- Place clay on parchment lined baking sheet in preheated oven (check the clay’s packaging for temperature information).
- Bake for 15 minutes for thicknesses up to 1/4".
- Remove from oven, cool.
- Paint on letters if you’d like.
- Apply acrylic paint.
- Wipe off excess paint with a paper towel, allow to dry.
- Bake markers after painting to adhere acrylic paint permanently.
- A small collection of wine corks, matching or non-matching.
- Wooden dowels, 3/16″, cut into 12″ lengths.
- Hand drill, 3/16″ drill bit.
- Polyurethane finish.
- Drill hole in bottom of cork.
- Cut wooden dowels.
- Insert dowels in bottom of cork.
- Write name of plant on cork.
- Paint with clear polyurethane coat for weatherproofing.
- Paint markers.
- Wooden paint stir sticks.
- Spray paint.
- Spray primer.
- Masking tape.
- Prep wooden sticks with spray primer.
- Once primed, spray foundation color on stick.
- When coat is dry, use masking tape to cover bottom of the stick.
- Spray sticks with contrasting color.
- Once dry, add doodles as you please!
If you adore the DIY concept, but would rather keep your projects short and sweet, try making garden markers from slightly decorated vinyl mini blind slates, or with specifically marked wooden chopsticks.
Image: Wendy Piersall