DIY plant markers to decorate garden

For Stacy Smith Morgan, of Woodstock, plant markers are a vital tool in her gardening plans. Ashley Miller/Daily


WOODSTOCK – Garden markers can be just as pretty as the flowers, herbs and vegetables they mark. Over the years Master Gardener Stacey Morgan Smith has learned through trial and error what materials and styles work best for her gardening needs.

“In my garden’s first year the plants get cut up mini blinds because I don’t know if it’s going to come back,” Smith said, laughing. “If you come back you get a permanent sign.”

The evolution of plant markers for Smith has evolved over the years. For her pollinator gardens, Smith said her favorite marker will always be the traditional aluminum name markers. For her herb garden, she likes a little something more fun and colorful.

“Everyone is different when it comes to their gardens and its markers. I like consistency throughout mine,” Smith said. “I’ve tried a lot over the years. But it really just comes down to personal taste.”

DIY plant markers aren’t hard to create – just find the right material and style for the garden. Many of the items Smith has used over the years have been picked up at local hardware stores or nurseries. Popular materials include stones, popsicle sticks, rustic wood, bricks, clay garden tags, ceramics and clay. Styles include traditional, whimsical, modern, rustic and artsy.

“Most markers you can make yourself or include your children,” she said. “It can be a fun project for them as well as a learning experience.”

Smith shared a few DIY tips for creating plant markers:

  • Use cut-up mini blinds with a permanent marker to mark first-year plants or fall-sown seeds.
  • Once plants are established, use markers to help identify early spring growth.
  • Use markers to help differentiate colors of daylilies and similar plants so they won’t mysteriously disappear.
  • Ensure markers are weather resistant if leaving out year round.
  • Use UV-resistant label tape for permanent markers.
  • For short-season markers, use large craft sticks and let children decorate them.
  • Affix tiles to stakes and mark with label tape or permanent marker.