UPDATED today, May 26, 2014
(photo credit: qvc on facebook)
I saw floating around on Facebook this week a picture of what was called a Fairy Garden, and in seeing that I thought...I could try that too.
It has often been said that you should leave a special part of your garden alone, reserved as a space where fairies may play. Okay, I didn't come up with it....I just thought it was a bunch of lazy people trying to explain why one part of their gardens didn't look tended to. Personally I like that thought of fairies playing among my flowers at night. All I ask is that they clean up after themselves, and stay away from the lawnmower when in use. Cleaning bugs off of a car is hard enough, I don't even want to think about cleaning fairy off of the lawnmower.
Are you smiling yet?
Okay, so.....the picture shows a large clay pot. I thought I had one of those around here somewhere, but on a quick look I don't see it so I grabbed a used smaller size but still perfect enough. And I bet you can use a large plastic flower pot as well.
I don't yet have my hens and chicks or my ferns and moss. I will get to the garden center this week to begin the assembly of it then but I wanted to see if I could get the pot taken care of first. Oh, I did stop at Michaels Craft store and they have cute wooden houses on either jute or cord for a dollar should you want your fairy to have a house.
Now back to the pot.
I grabbed a used clay pot I had already. You can buy new to try this, I just wanted something to play around with first as I figured out how I am going to do my garden. I would hate to spend a lot of money on a new pot and smash it.
In the picture, it looked like someone cut it out with a Dremel hand saw or something. I do have one of those but I wanted something more natural looking so I decided to control break my pot.
Before you start I suggest these few things:
- safety goggles or glasses- no need to risk getting something in your eyes
- a cheap white mask. if your cutting this pot, it gets dusty and who knows what's in the clay so why breathe that in
- duct tape - to control the break
- pliers --don't tell my husband I used his craftsman good pliers ;)
- a solid place to work
- a hammer
I laid the pot on my husbands basement work bench
I wasn't sure just how big an opening I wanted as I wanted it to look natural. I began by GENTLY tapping the pot at the top between the tape with a hammer. I know your reading this thinking how can I hit that pot without smashing it? You don't really know...I gently tapped it and you can see I got a nice straight crack down the center. I was tapping it to weaken it...not Smash it. And yes, cutting it with a tool can be done too....but this is how I did it.
I used the pliers to chip small pieces away. The tape really helped it not break past where I wanted it to.
I worked my way down the pot...turning it and looking at it to see how I wanted the opening to look, and then chip a bit more. Remember, you don't want to go too far down to the bottom because you need to add dirt there to start the first layer. And flat clay trays or broken clay pot pieces will be added throughout to give that layered look.
I pulled the tape back when I was done to check if it was enough....and then carefully removed the rest of the duct tape.
And here is how it looks. I love that raw look to the edge making it seem time worn. I will be sure to pick out the plants for the pot in the appropriate size to the pot. This pot measures 8" tall with an 8.5" diameter opening at the top. Depending on the size of the pot, the house also needs to be in proportion and in looking at these Michaels houses I got they may be too big for this sized pot. But I do have Christmas village houses with an English look to them that may work too.
However you lay your pot out, this is meant to be a whimsical, fun project so no way is wrong. As soon as I gather my greens I will update this blog in how I layered everything together step by step. I hope that you try making a fairy garden as well and I look forward to seeing your photos on my Facebook page.
I grabbed a flower pot base and a smaller flower pot and these will be used in the layering of the dirt.
I dropped the small flower pot to break it and however it broke is how I was going to use it.
I put dirt in the bottom of the pot coming up far enough to the opening to tuck a few hens and chick inside...then I put the tray inside and more dirt.
I added some stone crop (on the left) some thyme (back) and a few hens and chicks, (front).
As luck had it, the small flower pot broke in half on one side so it was perfect to lay near the thyme and make it look like it was a potted flower laying down. I added a creeping moss with tiny white flowers to the top and tucked another piece of broken clay pottery next to the hens and chicks.
I was going to add some more stones, and I still could but I only used one nicely shaped round one to be the front step of my English cottage retrieved from the attic Christmas decorations.
And this is my quick smaller version fairy potted garden. I could add some more rocks and moss and greens to this base to extend the look as this is a raised terracotta pedestal I also made.
While at the greenhouse this weekend I saw an entire display of Fairy Garden items you can buy and the prices were crazy. I will post those in the next blog of garden trail pics. This was not expensive at all to do, and the pot of hens and chicks I bought on sale for $4.00 was divided over numerous flower pots as were the other greens.
I am tucking this in a corner of my patio on a table and I cannot help but smile every time I see it.