The Crafty Mom: April Garden Friends

By Mary Lyon

If April showers are going to bring May flowers, then let's get your garden ready! Make some fun little "Garden Friends" to mark the spots where you're planting seeds for your favorite spring flowers or summer veggies! They'll help you remember what you planted, and where, and keep any special instructions on the seed packets right where they're needed while you're waiting for your new sprouts to appear. They're cute and colorful and will remain easy to spot as your garden grows.

This is an easy project for the little ones - with just a little gluing and twisting help from you - and it takes mere minutes to put together!

What You Need

  • 1 pair of wooden chopsticks from Chinese take-out - not separated

  • 1 wooden clothespin - the "jaw" kind that you pinch open

  • 1 colorful pipe cleaner

  • 2 plastic "Pony" beads - in a contrasting color

  • 1 medium-heat glue gun

  • 1 seed packet or homemade seed sign

What You Do

1. Arrange the clothespin flat side in, so that the metal hinge sits about a half-inch below the top of the chopsticks, at the "notch" where the chopsticks are still attached to each other. Us the glue gun to glue it in place. Let the glue set.

2. Once the glue sets completely, thread the pipe cleaner through the metal hinge in the clothespin. Make sure the two ends of the pipe cleaner that stick out are the same length.

3. String one "Pony" bead on each pipe cleaner end, bringing the beads down close to the clothespin. These will be the eyeballs of your "Garden Friend." Then bring the two loose ends of the pipe cleaner up and around, twisting them together behind the front of the clothespin. The twist should be hidden between the two upper ends of the clothespin.

Archives: The Crafty Mom4. Wrap the two ends of the pipe cleaner back behind the top of the chopsticks. Twist them securely together - like a big twist-tie - at the "notch" below the head of the chopsticks. That will help keep them in place. The ends of the pipe cleaner should still be a few inches long.

5. Spiral the loose ends of the pipe cleaner inward toward the head of the chopsticks. Now, your "Garden Friend" has cute, round ears!

6. Now, put your "Garden Friend" to work. When you plant your seeds, your "Garden Friend" will hold the empty seed packet tightly in its jaws and stand at attention right by the spot where you just finished planting. The tapered tips of the chopsticks at the bottom make your "Garden Friend" easy to stick into the soil.