Plant ID signs

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by SittinDuck, Apr 10, 2016.

  1. SittinDuck

    SittinDuck Out Of The Brooder

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    I want to make plant identification signs that I can stick into the ground to let me and others know what plant they're looking at. The problem is that most things fall apart. Wood rots, steel rusts, plastic degrades in sunlight, ink fades etc. What is the easiest way to make signs that will last a long time? Barring any better ideas, I'll probably take stainless steel plate and grind the name on. It's just a lot of work.
     
  2. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    Cut a bleach bottle into signs. Label them with Sharpie. An old venetian blind will yield a life time of plant stakes.
     
  3. Bugseye

    Bugseye Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Paint pens last year in and out. Kindling sticks make good markers.
     
  4. Circle-M-Farm

    Circle-M-Farm Out Of The Brooder

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  5. SittinDuck

    SittinDuck Out Of The Brooder

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    I tried that. Sharpies didn't last 1 year... just in time for me to forget what I wrote :(

    Wooden stakes rot in the ground.

    How many years have you gotten out of the markers?
     
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    If you're looking for long term plant labels, I'd spring for the metal ones. Perhaps if it's a light ga. metal, it can be scribed with a metal stylus or awl.
     
  7. Circle-M-Farm

    Circle-M-Farm Out Of The Brooder

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    If you mean how long will a single marker last me, it depends on how much I use it, at least a year or two.

    Now if your asking about the length of time until it starts to fade, I have some stuff that lasted a good two/ three years.


    If your looking for something to last longer than that, use a oil based paint marker then let it dry. After it dries spray over it with clear enamel.
     
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    I generally use Sharpies. I’ve tried them on window blinds and other plastic. They did not last all that well, not for the season. I’ve cut a plastic chicken feed bag and wired that to my tomato cages, marked with a Sharpie, to tell varieties apart. I think that helps keep the birds away, with them flapping in the wind. I tried tying them with string but the wind unties them. The ink fades on them before the season is out too but it lasted long enough.

    I’m OK with the markers only lasting a season. I always shuffle things around in the garden and I often grow different varieties of many things. I do have some stand-bys but a lot of the markers aren’t really reusable.

    I take a 2x4 (I usually use treated but you can’t be certified organic if you do that. Sometimes I use a scrap 2x4 that’s not treated) and rip it into strips ¾” thick or thereabouts. I cut most of them into 18” lengths but for some stuff I use 24” lengths. I sand off the ends where I will mark them with the Sharpie to get it smooth. I can read those through the season but some can get a little faded. The next year I sand off where I had marked and re-mark them. Often I get two years out of them, sometimes more, sometimes less. You can get a bunch out of a 2x4.

    If you want something to last longer and be easier to read you could paint them then mark or maybe mark and coat with urethane. Not sure how organic that would be. Or you can get a Dremel tool engraver and use metal or plastic. That should really last but it depends on the material you use how well you can read that engraving.

    Lots of different ways to do this but I can’t say I’m overjoyed with the one I use. Still, it works for me.
     
  9. SittinDuck

    SittinDuck Out Of The Brooder

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    The idea of using paint (maybe automotive paint) with clearcoat on top may work for as long as car paint stays on a car.

    I have a lot of stainless steel plate and could grind the names onto that, but it's time consuming. No doubt that would be permanent though.

    I have a lot of apple trees and can't remember which is which. Is that the Gala or the Delicious? I also thought it would be kinda neat to have somewhat attractive signs that people can read like state parks would have. Something that would add to the landscaping value.

    I made this with some stainless plate. The 9 is a big washer with a strip of metal. I have it hanging above my driveway to let UPS trucks know not to pull in and clobber my tree limbs. The paint is rustoleum industrial stuff.

    [​IMG]

    I was just curious is someone knew of an easier way.
     
  10. pattyhen

    pattyhen Chicks Ducks oh my

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    Paint the name of a plant or use a marker on a flat rock. Seal with poly or modge podge. You can also use old spoons.
     

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