Monday, July 30, 2012

Plantable Paper

It is hot in Kansas!  We needed some kid-friendly projects so we made some plantable paper!

Plantable paper is paper that has flower seeds embedded in it.  When you are done with the paper, plant it in a pot or somewhere outside and wait for the flowers to grow!

You need:

Scraps of paper - raid your recycle bin but avoid newspaper.  The print turns everything gray
flower seeds
water
a blender
some sort of screen
felt
large container that your screen fits into

I didn't have a screen laying around so I had to make one.  I used a piece of scrap screening from when I redid our screen door in the back last spring.  I stapled it to some scrap wood.  It's not pretty but it works.


Fill a container that your screen will fit into with about two inches of water.

My ten year old took the photos for this posting so there are a lot of "extra" pictures (like this one) of things I'm sure you know how to do but he thought would be good for the blog.

Rip up your pieces of paper and put it into your blender.  Fill the blender with water and blend until it's sludgy.  Don't put too much paper in there or it will make paste.  You can always put more paper in if you have too little.

It should be thick and goopy but not pastey.

Stir in a couple tablespoons of your seeds.  We use a wildflower mix.

Dump it into your container of water.

Eeeew!  I know what this looks like. . . .

Get a grip and slide in your screen underneath the goop.  Carefully wiggle it a bit then lift straight out.  Let the water drain.

Put it on a layer of felt.

Cover it with another layer of felt and use a rolling pin to roll it out.  Keep a towel handy because some water will squash out.



Keep on rolling!  (Who says that?!)  When you have all the water squished out, it should look like this.


It will also stick to your screen.

At this point I put the paper face down on a dry layer of felt and rolled the rolling pin over the screen.

That helps "release" the paper from the screen to the felt.

The "prove it" shot my son insisted on taking:

See?  Told you. 

I covered the paper with a layer of felt and rolled over the top of it again, just to make sure all the water was squished out and to toughen it up for our project.

Let it dry and it's ready to use!

Excited to see what they do with it?  Me, too!  They're trying to decide on the "perfect" project for it.  I'm going to say that it will probably include something special mailed to Grammy and maybe, if I'm lucky and there are leftovers, something for me! 

If I do it again:

Not so many seeds!  There are an insane amount of seeds in this piece of paper!

NOTE:  Want colored paper?  Add some tissue paper in the color you want before you blend.

2 comments:

  1. Nice project. And I DEFINITELY like the extra pictures...gives a nice project-log: step-by-step!

    I wonder if the felt paper can be used for grass seeds. I have bald patches in the grass that I seed, and cover with Top Soil (a fine mulching material with some fertilizers) but the birds find the seeds pretty quickly.

    Does anyone have experience with project using grass seeds?

    Thanks for the idea!! Once again...a very useful craft idea!!

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    1. Thanks for the compliment! I would bet you could do this to put over your bare spots quite easily. You wouldn't even have to make it pretty! I would bet you could pour the goop with seeds directly over the spots and let them dry out there. We have the bare spots in our yard, too, but ours are due to dogs and kids so there's not much point in seeding as of yet!

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