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What You'll Need to Get Started. . .
Our garden club members are not only talented, but happy to share what they know! From to time, we'll showcase their varied skills and tell how you can DIY at home.
How to Make Pressed-Flower Note Cards or Prints...
by Judy Simpson and Dorian Madreperla
Two ceramic or
Oven mitts or pot holders
Blank note cards and glue
Step 1. Choose your flowers
Some flowers press better than others depending on thickness and moisture. You can experiment until you find combinations you like or play it safe with impatiens, violets and pansies, which all work well.
Step 2. Arrange your flowers
Take a piece of porous or ceramic tile and cover the rough side with a paper towel.
Next, cover the paper towel with computer or artist's paper.
Place the flowers you're pressing on top of the paper. Pressing works best when you use flowers of similar thickness.
Now repeat the layering in reverse: paper, paper towel, tile.
Finally, secure with a rubber band.
Microwave for 60 seconds on high.
Caution! Tiles will be hot!
Using pot holders or oven mitts, carefully remove rubber band, top tile and paper towel to check if ready.
(If flowers are still moist to the touch, continue to microwave in 10-second increments until completely dry.
Allow pressed flowers to sit for 10-15 minutes.
Gently remove your pressed flowers.
Next, mix some white glue with a small amount of water and using a cotton swab, carefully apply a tiny drop to the back of your flower. Spread evenly.
Finally, arrange your flowers on a blank note card or, if you prefer, artist's paper for framing.
Greetings from My Garden!
And here are two of the beautiful finished products! One final note: if, after pressing the flowers, you choose not to make the cards right away, you might want to stack the pressed flowers between computer sheets of paper. You can HOLD several flowers together, but be sure to keep the sheets on top of each other. Adds Judy Simpson: "I put the tiles on top for extra pressing until I gather enough to do a card, etc. Keeps them from curling and preserves them longer until gluing time."
How to Make Your Own Hummingbird Nectar
by Linda Passaro from the Audubon Society
What You'll Need to Get Started...
Flapping your wings all day is quite a workout and hummingbirds need to feed constantly. In fact, if you expended as much energy as these tiny critters, you'd need 155,000 calories per day--about 275 Big Macs! For them, that means visiting 1000-2000 flowers daily. To help, why not set up a feeder and give the little guys a much-needed break.
Choose a feeder that's easy to clean and easy to fill. Yeasts, mold and bacteria grow in sugar water and can harm hummingbirds. Feeders should be cleaned every few days and filled with fresh nectar.
1/4 Cup refined white sugar
Use only refined white sugar. Honey promotes fungus and organic, natural and raw sugars contain iron that could be harmful.
1. Mix the sugar and boiling water until the sugar is dissolved.
2. Cool the mixture and fill the feeder.
3. Place the feeder in the shade to keep the nectar fresh longer. Feeders can be placed in the sun but will have to be changed and filled more often.