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Re: [iris] HYB: CULT: Garden labels

Hi Christian,? 

Since I moved to this location (2003,) I've settled into a pattern.? It took me years to come up with products I'm relatively comfortable using.? 

As to economy, you can't get much cheaper than free!? I use min-blinds and cut up the old white ones to use in the garden.??They go onto the crosses for identification, into the seedling pots, and into ?the garden with the seedlings.??The blinds are sun damaged already and they're brittle before they hit the garden.? They still work well when cut into 6-8 inch lengths, unless the dogs, the deer, or I step on them.? 

I could use the colored ones, if I bought white paint pens.

For permanent clumps, I use the Paw Paw metal markers/Everlast listed in the Iris Bulletin.? (They have a website) I'm constantly comparison shopping and I've not found any metal tags cheaper. So far, the shipping is included in the price. They supply a wax (crayon type) pencil with each order of 100.? They leave a wax surface which I find less than desirable.? This accessment might not be fair, since I only use them when I've run out of the paint pens and they may not be in top condition.? Not always on the cleanest surface.? 

My son?mows the paths in the garden and I've learned to sacrifice long distance identification for survival.? I now sink the tags low enough that he can't snag them with the mower.? Most of the time.? 

Pencil is long lasting but hard to read.? 

After years of frustration, I've settled into the use of paint pens--"Elmer's Painters"?on the markers.? I prefer the?fine tip. ?They are filled with acrylic paint and work on wood, paper, photos, plastic, and metal.? I've bought them at WalMart, in the craft section, for years.? Now that I'm less mobile, I've found an online supplier.? Just received a shipment from the following store in Nashville:<hhttp://store.yahoo.com/yhst-65953260967716/elpafi.html>? Paid $2.49 (each) plus shipping.? They're about $3.00 each at Wally world but no shipping.? 

To my knowledge, the paint does not wash off in the snow.? I've read somewhere that?it can be cleaned off with rubbing alcohol, but I've not tried it.? Yet.? 

 <<and more economical,for garden labels.  >>

There is a lot of information on garden labels/markers in the archives.? Pictures, too.? 

Betty W.
zone 6

-----Original Message-----
From: christian foster <flatnflashy@yahoo.com>
To: iris@hort.net
Sent: Fri, 17 Oct 2008 7:42 pm
Subject: [iris] HYB: CULT: Garden labels

Hey gang.

I've been looking for something new to try, and more economical,
for garden labels.  

So far I've tried:
- self adhesive vinyl floor tiles-
they work well as dividers except that they become brittle.  They are too low
in the ground to be visible after the seedlings grow up.

- plastic spoons-
became brittle very quickly but I really liked the surface area of the bowl
for writing on.

- popsicle sticks- became brittle and too low, hard to find
in growth.  They worked well in germination pots and to mark where seedlings
had been lined out.

Lately a new close-out type store opened in my area. 
Inside I spotted many boxes of PVC mini-blinds... many of which were clearly
not functional as blinds.  I haven't gone to ask about buying them in bulk
because gas prices are causing me to re-consider buying plastic products.

the school where I work there are several repositories of paint stirring
sticks.  Some of them are from painting projects, but most I think are there
for some other as yet undiscovered reason.  One such deposit is in the library
where they are sometimes used to mark the place of a book that has been taken
off the shelf.  

As it happens the librarian is interested in breeding roses
so she and I chat about gardening on occasion.  Yesterday, we were sitting
near the pail of paint stirring sticks and I said... "I think I might try
those."  She said she already had and they worked well except they soak up
water and might mold.

I also heard recently that Copper Sulfate will keep
seeds from molding.  Source on that one is suspect.

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