I just dropped the price of
the permaculture playing cards
for a wee bit.

 

 

uses include:
- infecting brains with permaculture
- convincing folks that you are not crazy
- gift giving obligations
- stocking stuffer
- gambling distraction
- an hour or two of reading
- find the needle
- find the 26 hidden names

clickity-click-click

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labeling a garden - search for permanent BIG labels  RSS feed

 
Angelika Maier
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Location: cool climate, Blue Mountains, Australia
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I grow and sell herb plants, lots of variety and I plan to open the garden in the future. For visitors and for me (!!!) I want clear labels which are big enough being read standing up and which lasts a long time. I llooked in pinterest and nothing useful came up. What I need is the lating name, the common name and in some cases cultivar (not basil or rosemary, thanks I know how they look like!).
Has anyone any idea how to make these?  I shouldn't have to break the bank for this either and there are about 300 labels to be made. It shouldn't be anythink which dangles in a tree either because I just don't have a tree collection (lack of space).
Maybe the forum is the wrong one, in this case mods please move!
 
Scott Foster
Posts: 199
Location: 6a
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forest garden hugelkultur woodworking
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Use old pop or beer cans, you can write on them with a ballpoint pen and they actually indent the aluminum. cut them up with aviation snips.  You can put a hole in the aluminum with a paper punch. 

Use ac flashing that you purchase in rolls and use permanent paint pen (not a marker), use a paper cutter to cut to size, drill hole.

For posts, you could use just about anything.  I think rebar would be cool but I'm not sure how much you would be spending in Australia.  Attach sign with wire and twist on tight with needle nose pliers. You could also use the rods that you use to put up rolled insulation.  you could skip the wire and just bend the Insulation rod.

That's my two cents.
 
Angelika Maier
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I've never heard of paint pen, are these pens filled with real paint? That sounds actually good, with a brush it needs ages. AC flashing, is this for roofig? What is the material? I saw some really fancy decorations in the botanical garden, rebar which is rolled up at the end and it looks great, but rebar is probably expensive.
 
Scott Foster
Posts: 199
Location: 6a
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forest garden hugelkultur woodworking
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Angelika Maier wrote:I've never heard of paint pen, are these pens filled with real paint? That sounds actually good, with a brush it needs ages. AC flashing, is this for roofing? What is the material? I saw some really fancy decorations in the botanical garden, rebar which is rolled up at the end and it looks great, but rebar is probably expensive.


Do an Amazon Search for Permanent Paint Markers.  Sharpie makes an oil-based paint marker.,   Air Conditioning flashing, any aluminum that you can find that's flimsy and easy to cut.  What I'm thinking of comes in a roll that's like 6" wide and comes in different length rolls.   Wood is probably the cheapest way to go for the stake.  I was thinking of something like black locust but you probably don't have access to that wood.  If you have a wood that doesn't rot in the ground that would be the way to go.  Just use a hand ax to make a point on the stick. 
 
Angelika Maier
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There is a window factory here and they have a public trash bin, I collected some suitable timber strips mainly cedar maybe I could use this sharpie pen on the timber strips cut them on an angle and it would do the trick. or maybe that rots away in no time at all, but with the sharpie it is actually fast and probably cheap.
 
Anne Miller
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Location: USDA Zone 8a
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The sharpie will work but will fad after a while.

There used to be a tool you could buy that would burn your letters into the cedar.

Another option is to buy the stick on letters like used on mail boxes.

Like this:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/35Pc-Wood-Burning-Pen-Set-Wood-Burning-Soldering-Chiseled-Tips-Hot-Blade-with
 
Scott Foster
Posts: 199
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Anne Miller wrote:The sharpie will work but will fad after a while.

There used to be a tool you could buy that would burn your letters into the cedar.

Another option is to buy the stick on letters like used on mail boxes.

Like this:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/35Pc-Wood-Burning-Pen-Set-Wood-Burning-Soldering-Chiseled-Tips-Hot-Blade-with


Have you tried the sharpie oil paint markers?
 
Angelika Maier
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I think burden wood looks great but wouldn't it fade too? I mean four or five years is good for outdoors.
 
Chris Sargent
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Location: SE Alaska
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Metal markers made out of flashing would be one way to go.

I had some student make markers for our school garden and also wanted something large enough to be easily read.  I wanted something that would last for years and withstand the elements.  So I decided to go with metal.  We tried a few different types and liked the copper flashing the best.  I used this copper flashing  Its a bit expensive as it is copper but I really like the look and a roll will make hundreds of markers.  Plus the softer copper is easier to write or press into.   I also love the way copper weathers so weathering and the elements are actually a positive.  If it becomes too weathered dark/hard to read a quick buffing will have it looking like new again.

Here are some of the finished markers the students made.



I've also used thin aluminum flashing for decorative projects around the garden.  We had the students draw pics into squares of thin aluminum flashing and then tacked them onto the wooden raised beds.  They've been out there for I think four years and still look good.  So that is an option if you want less expensive.

You can just use a thick pen, large nail, or awl to write onto the flashing.  Just want something that leaves a nice indent in the metal.  The ones I had to students do we used decorative letter punches from the craft store so they are fancier.  To make the letters more visible we spray painted them.  Just lay out the markers and give them a quick coat from a metal spray paint like Rustoleum.  Once the paint dries take some steel wool and rub the paint off from around the letters.  The paint stays in the depressions and makes the wording darker.  These are pretty thin so I think they'll hold up better attached to something solid.  You could use wood as the backer.  I plan to use plexiglass (because I live in a rain forest and everything stays really wet, molds, and rots here) so it lasts longer but it will ad to the expense.  The copper flashing tape already has an adhesive backing so it'll be easy to attach.  Finally I'm going to drill holes and use some metal wire to make stakes. 

If I was making hundreds of these I'd probably attach the flashing to the backing (thin plexiglass or plywood) as whole sheets.  Mark them into an even length x width and then hand write on them.  Paint the whole thing and use a fine sanding disk or buffing pad to rub the paint off the entire panel at once.  I'd probably go ahead and drill the holes while it was a larger sheet as well.  Then I would saw them apart into individual markers along the established lengths. 
 
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