Recycled Garden Stakes

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Great news: even though the hubs and I are in a rental, we were able to lay claim to a community garden plot this summer and we are so ecstatic! We have a 15ft x 15ft plot and have been getting our rows in order, and I can’t wait for it to start producing. I will keep you updated on our progress!

If you’re like me, you’ve had grand ideas for super creative projects as seen on pinterest, but it’s ironic that many of the projects that are touted as cheap, DIY, or re-purposed actually require one to go out and buy supplies (sometimes even used supplies) to finish the project.

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Those wood, stone, and metal plant stakes are pretty darn adorable, but I’ve always been leery of spending money on specific plant signs that I may 1) lose between this growing season and the next, 2) plant completely different plants and have a bunch of useless name plates, 3) break those adorable little ceramic pieces when I throw them into my gardening basket, or 4) lose them in the dirt. And then even if they last long enough to be of any use, it seems redundant to have signs indicating that a four-foot tall plant producing big red tomatoes is in fact a tomato plant.

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With that in mind, I decided to make some signs that will last just long enough for plants to fruit but are recyclable as well and only require things I have in my house. It’s simple:

1) Keep all of the little plastic tabs that come with seedlings that you buy to plant. If you don’t have any, you can fashion pointed cardboard “stakes” out of the firmest cardboard you have on hand.

2) Cut 1″ x 2-3″ rectangles of cardboard and use a permanent marker to write the names of each plant clearly on each piece.

3) Use clear packing tape to semi-waterproof the cardboard sign (optional).

4) Staple the name card to the top of the seedling cards and insert the plastic tab firmly into the ground.

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The packing tape should keep most water off of the cardboard and should survive just long enough to be useful to you. If you want them to be completely decomposable, skip the waterproofing step; they’ll should still last just long enough without breaking down, but won’t leave plastic tape in your garden.

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Happy growing!

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