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Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

I have a planter box outside my door where each year I plant my herb garden. I’m not crazy about those little plastic markers that come with the potted herbs, so I decided to make a set of my own. Luck would have it that I had been given a big container full of keys, and so these recycled key plant markers were born!

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

My daughter’s boyfriend works at the hardware store here in town. One day he showed up with a 2-liter plastic bottle, the top cut off and filled with keys. They have a key cutting machine, and apparently these were all the rejects. He knew me well enough that I could probably make something from them!

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

As you can see from the bottle, they had some fun with a fellow employee named Ricky. ;-)

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

I love recycling things and keeping as much as possible out of the landfill. If you’re like that too, I suggest you check with your local hardware store and see what they do with their mishap keys! Maybe you’ll come home with a batch as well.

Toads Welcome Sign from CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

Anyway, back to the planter. You might remember my Toads Welcome Herb Garden Sign from last year.

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

Please note, all of these key marker photos are from last year, hence the vast amount of unplanted space you see.

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

Well this year I looked at the empty planter and decided I wanted it to be much fuller than last year. I added even more herbs, and I kid you not, the day after I planted them the toad was back! I’m happy to see him taking up residence here once again. And, this year, he has a lot more plant cover as you can see!

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

Here’s some photos of him from last year.

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

To make these plant markers, I used white spray paint with a satin finish. I used an old shower curtain to protect the grass and laid all the keys out. I sprayed them on one side and let them dry, then flipped them over and did the other side.

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

To decide what to write on each key, I traced each one’s shape onto paper first. Then I drew out the herb names to see what fit best on each key. When I was ready, I used colored Sharpie’s to add the words and designs.

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

See?

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro
Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro
Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro
Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro
Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro
Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro
Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys on CraftsbyAmanda.com @amandaformaro

These survived great last year, but I neglected to bring them in over the winter and now I have to redo them. So don’t forget to bring in your markers and save yourself the extra step!

 

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys

Rating: 51

Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys

What you need:

  • Recycled keys
  • White indoor/outdoor spray paint
  • Colorful Sharpie permanent markers
  • Outdoor sealer spray or brush-on (such as Outdoor Mod Podge)

What you do:

  1. Spray paint the keys and allow to dry. Give them a second coat and let them dry again before turning them all over and painting the other side.
  2. Write herb names with colorful Sharpies. Then trace over the words, offset just a little, with a black fine point Sharpie. You want to make sure the color shows through.
  3. Use shades of green to draw leaves in different sizes on the keys. I also used pinks, oranges and reds to add a few dots here and there just for colorful accent.
  4. Allow the marker to dry for two hours before applying sealer. Apply two coats to each side.
http://craftsbyamanda.com/2013/05/make-plant-markers-from-recycled-keys.html

Me

13 Responses to Make Plant Markers from Recycled Keys

  1. 1
    shawna bates says:

    Very cute idea!!

  2. 2
    Casse-bonbec says:

    what a good and beautiful idea !

  3. 3
    Terri Betz says:

    Awesomeness! You are a genius! These are magical and I have a bunch of old keys! Love you and your brain! Pinning it of course as Blue Strong! You’ve made my day Amanda!Thanks Thanks Thanks! :)

  4. 4
    Mary Louise Shimkus says:

    This will make me smile when I’m in the garden, not to mention the one that will be on my sisters face when I give her her own set of “garden keys”. Thanks, Amanda

  5. 5

    ahhhh so neat! Those will look perfect in our flowerbed and herb planters!

  6. 6
    lmcburney says:

    I love the recycled key idea. When the plants fill out, you could hang the keys over the plants from something else recycled like hangers or something. Over strawberry plants perhaps the dangling keys would deter the birds from landing and eating them. I remember my grandpa hanging small pie tins over his plants. Same idea, have something randomly making movement and noise to deter the birds. Anyway, just my thoughts on your great recycled key project.

  7. 7

    I have a collection of keys that no one seems to know what they open :)
    This is a lovely idea!

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