Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Garden Creative: Lucky for you, no poetry!

Ha. So I stated that this day I wanted to be creative, and the plan was to do poetry, because I usually have a million nature inspired words to write upon that could be considered poetic, but then I realize hours later is pure... well, compost.

LUCKY FOR YOU, I instead have been creative in other garden crafty-useful and fun ways.

I keep my gardening boots in my sunroom, which is not airtight, but a relatively safe place to set plants away from too much sun or wind and other elements that can be problematic if I need to neglect them for a while.  In the process, I have introduced all sorts of flora and fauna into the sunroom, namely spiders which I am in constant battle with to keep their webs and children at bay.  I really need to institute a weekly clean up and purge of that area to make things saner in there...  Plus this might encourage the spiders to just MOVE OUT and not continuously making homes in my baskets, under the table, in the corners of stands and etc.

The biggest problem I have, that I can't ignore are spiders in my boots.  I get very bad reactions to spider bites, when, depending on the spider the bites can grow to the size of a grapefruit, or the itching is so intense that its take a month for it to stop and then months or a year for the bite bruise to heal.  So, I keep a good eye out for spiders.  I'm not scared of spiders, I'm just nervous about being bitten by them.

To combat accidental boot biting I've taken to stuffing rags into my boots so that I can foil the crawlers from nesting inside them and then surprising both of us when I put the boots on.  Sadly I have found the rags to ineffective in completely keeping spiders out as the rags tend to slide down, exposing the top part of the boot, allowing for some space to exist between the top of the boot and the slipped stuffed rag.

I also wanted to be sure that my boots could stay upright and keep their shape, so, in deference to fancier boot devices, I thought and thought and decided that I need to make some sort of stuffed/filled boot shape keeper/spider obstacle.  It needed to not be able to rot or mold (so the easy cloth tube sock wouldn't do it), and not attract pests/feel like a waste of food (so no beans or rice as filling).

I remembered that I saved an old heavy plastic duty rice bag:

and had some extra sand sitting around for random acts of soil mixing.  So I began winging my little spider preventer.

Measuring? What measuring?  Mostly I just halved, then quarter this plastic rice bag, retaining the stitched part to my use.  I then halved that to form each "boot bag" that I'll fill with sand.

Essentially I restitch the already loosely stitched part to reinforce it, and made a bag with an opening to fill with sand.

After filling with sand I stitch up the top and tada...! It doesn't fit the boot, properly (too big down the bottom) because I don't measure.

Brill.  So I squish some of the sand up and adjust the bottom half to be a little smaller and tighter with some cursory stitching and FINALLY it works! woohoo.

Round 2 worked out a lot better (do things in pairs, and finish the first one before going onto the next half of the set so you can learn from your mistakes I say!)

Hurray, now my boots will stay in shape and the spiders won't dare to build webs at the mouth of my boots and can't get inside!

One final bit of creativity:

I've been getting these beautiful multicolored cage free eggs from my farmer's market.  The egg shells themselves are too pretty, so I decided to make something with them as a gift to the vendor people who I get my eggs from (since one of the them is unfortunately having to deal with bad luck left and right as of late).  Plus, they're "pay what you can" eggs and the concept of this is so wonderful to me I think they deserved a little gift:

On the back of one for the lady who's been having issues in life I also wrote: "So things stop clucking up!"  The metal chickens shown are also a slightly modified version of what I made for her originally (this is a round 2).  The originals had the phrase written on the chickens, here I decided I liked using extra soda can metal to make small signs to say it.

Pretty much free little garden craft for me: stolen borrowed recycling soda/beer cans from neighbors, dired lawn clippings, wood glue on hand, eggs shells after contents had been used, bottle caps from already drunk beer, and special "Dark Dancer" red clover that I've been growing and has spread that insures 4 leaf clovers for true luck ;)

Happy Wednesday and hope any of this helped or was interesting!