Inexpensive Plant Markers

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Posted by @beckygardener on
Need an inexpensive plant marker? This marker is cheap to make and almost invisible, too!

Many gardeners have an array of plants and/or do hybridizing. Trying to keep track of all the names can be challenging for many of us. Plant markers can be a necessity in a garden.

There are some beautiful metal markers available that can be used with a printing machine, but for me that breaks my annual garden budget. I have tried cheap vinyl blinds cut into strips and marked with permanent marker or pencil. Unfortunately, the writing fades and the blind strips don't last very long before they become brittle and break outside in the weather, so I have discovered a better way to create a plant marker/label.

I use clear plastic disposable knives and Puffy Paint with a fine tip. I use the paint to write either the name or a letter/number code on each knife. Let it dry overnight and then just stick them in the ground next to each plant the following day. A box of 48 knives and a small bottle of Puffy Paint can be purchased at craft stores or even at Walmart. I discovered that the dark-colored Puffy Paint is easier to see than the pastel colors. I write on the serrated end of the knife. When they are dry, I push the written end down into the ground and let the nearly invisible handle of the knife stick up above the ground. They are clear, so they are hardly noticeable. The handles also do double duty by discouraging my dog and various wild critters from going into the garden beds because they do not like stepping on them. I really like these because they are not very noticeable, so your attention is focused on the plants and not so much on the markers.

For hybridizing, I use a letter and number system with a cross-reference list that I keep on my computer AND in a paper notebook. (We all know about computer crashes!) My markers have been in the ground for 2+ years and the paint shows no fading. The thick plastic knives are still in great shape, so I expect them to last for many more years to come.

Materials needed to make these plant markers:

I small bottle of Puffy Paint (with fine tip)
1 box of 48 clear disposable knives

Thumb of 2015-05-10/beckygardener/449144

Marker in the ground next to a plant:
Thumb of 2015-05-10/beckygardener/c601be

Numerous markers in a hybridizing garden bed:
Thumb of 2015-05-10/beckygardener/0fe70c

This is a cheap and easy way to make plant markers for your garden.

Comments and Discussion
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Another option of plant marker by cperesc Apr 30, 2016 8:28 AM 1
Very good idea by donnabking Jul 28, 2015 7:25 PM 4
Will this type of paint work on rocks? by Natalie Jul 27, 2015 9:20 AM 2
Buried Sharpie writing by coboro Jul 26, 2015 12:08 PM 5
plant markers by dogoodcraf Jul 26, 2015 7:46 AM 3
Question? by gardengus Jul 26, 2015 6:49 AM 8
If you prefer to see the name of the plant ... by beckygardener Jul 25, 2015 10:31 AM 12
Not dog proof by rosesse Jul 25, 2015 7:35 AM 1
Like this idea! by stilldew Jul 25, 2015 7:29 AM 3
something else i do with these markers .... by beckygardener Jul 25, 2015 7:20 AM 0
Inexpensive plant marker by coolsonoma Jul 25, 2015 7:03 AM 1

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