Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Name That Herb

It's that time of year, visiting the local nurseries and picking out a few veggies and some herbs.

We usually don't plant a big garden, just a few tomatoes, green beans, peppers and a plant or two of squash.  Most of our property is wooded, we hate to cut down trees to enlarge our current garden plot.  We are researching container or bale gardening.  I'm looking forward to experimenting with these options.

I made these plant pokes from the bottom of a disposable cake pan. To make these, cut the tin into rectangles with a pair of scissors, and score 1/4 of an inch in on the back side with a ball point pen, then, fold the edges in and smooth them down with a pencil.  Write the herb name on the front side and score it with a ball point pen. Paint the sign with a primer and once the paint is dry cover it with a creamy white color ( I used DecoArt Americana paint, in Buttermilk).  Once it is dry, water down a cinnamon color ( again, I used DecoArt American in Light Cinnamon) and wash it over the corners of the sign.  Next, water down a Burnt Umber color (Also DecoArt Americana) and with a small lettering brush trace over the indented letters.  Punch a hole in the top center with a pointed hole punch.  I used a portion of a metal hanger to create the poke for the sign.  Make a crook in the top and then bend up to form a hook to hold the sign. Of course, any bendable metal will work for this.

I love fresh herbs, there's no other flavor like them!

These pokes were made using carpenter's shims.

For these herb pokes, I cut the shims down the center using a bandsaw.  I painted them with a creamy white, then wrote the herb names in with black paint. Once the paint was dried I sanded over the letters to antique them slightly, and then stained them with a brown stain.  I varnished them with an exterior varnish so they will hold up under the weather.

These were fun to make and look great in the pots. What a help these will be in identifying the herbs once they are plated in a larger container.  Yes, I do forget what they are and need a little reminder.



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