Every Bloomin' Thing: Pine cone crafts
The winter garden is in and bulbs are planted. What to do next?
Well, Thanksgiving is around the corner and Christmas is not far behind. I know, it's time for pine cone crafts.
I am the first to admit that I am not crafty, but even I can work with pine cones to make something. In fact, I can tell you how to spend an entire day or more with pine cones.
Did you ever wonder what a pine cone is? Here's the answer: It is the female fruiting body of a pine tree. If fertilized, a pine cone will form seeds which will be released to grow trees. Way to go, girl.
The first thing to do is talk to your significant other, friends, kids, grandkids or anybody into helping you gather pine cones. This can be done on a fun trip to the mountains, your backyard if you have a pine tree, or, with permission, your neighbor's backyard if they have pine trees. This can easily be done if you stress the word "fun." Especially works well with the kids. The word "fun" doesn't always work with adults.
After the first hurdle of gathering your pine cones, you must now prepare them. This is done by covering a cookie sheet with foil and baking the cones in the oven at 200 or 250 degrees F for 20 minutes or until the sap is melted and all bugs are dead. You don't want to have any creepy crawlers marching around the dining table from your pine cone centerpiece.
Finally, after gathering and baking, you are ready to be creative. If you are tired out by this time, you can just plop them in a basket and they will look great, but that would be cheating.
How about scented potpourri? Put cinnamon, cloves, lemon zest and pumpkin pie spice in a large zip-lock bag. Spray the cones with adhesive, put in bag, shake, remove from bag and smell. That was easy.
Here are more ideas. Spread peanut butter on them, roll in birdseed, hang up outside for the birds.
Roll them in acrylic paint and put in a basket. We all have bits and dabs of paint leftover.
Spray paint them silver or gold, sprinkle with glitter and put in a glass vase.
Make snow cones by touching tips of cones with white acrylic paint with a small foam brush. Let dry and put in a white bowl.
Make a Thanksgiving turkey. The flat end is the tail after you stick in a few feathers or feather-shaped cutouts. On the pointy end put a cutout the shape of a question mark for the head and twigs or chenille stems for legs.
You get the idea. Don't just leave them on the ground to turn into pine trees. Be creative.
The Nov. 27 garden club meeting begins at 12:30 p.m., with a social, and at 1 p.m., the meeting and program. The club meets at 12889 Baker Road, Red Bluff. The public is encouraged to attend. Speaker Gerry Larson will present a program on "All about Bees."
Shirley Felder is a member of the Red Bluff Garden Club, which is affiliated with Cascade District Garden Club; California Garden Clubs Inc.; Pacific Region Garden Clubs and National Garden Clubs Inc.