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Mother Nature Did Most of the Work

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Mother Nature Did Most of the Work

Working at the Missouri Botanical Garden has proven to have many benefits but one of the best is being able to get out and walk this world-class garden on a regular basis.  The changing seasons brings a new perspective to the landscape and fall is assuredly one of our most beautiful in St. Louis.  While strolling near Henry Shaw’s mausoleum, I stopped to admire several very large bur oaks (Quercus macrocarpa) and the sea of unusual acorns they produce.  After collecting a few for display at the Kemper Center for Home Gardening, I decided to fashion some after a craft project I saw years ago.  A few simple steps transformed the empty acorns into tiny hedgehogs.  Many visitors have stopped to admire these whimsical little creatures and asked if they were difficult to make.  Mother Nature did most of the work by creating the beautiful fringed acorns.  I just added a couple of simple touches. 

Materials:
·         Empty bur oak acorn caps
·         Tan pom poms – 1.5 inch
·         Mini-sized black brads
·         Pinecone
·         Round wood discs – 1 inch
·         Scissors/tweezers
·         Super glue/hot glue

Simply remove the acorn from the cap if it has not already fallen out.  Give a slight shape to the pom pom by trimming a little with scissors to achieve a pointed nose (or you can skip this step.)  Tuck the pom pom into the acorn cap.  Using tweezers, super glue the brads in place for the eyes and nose.  Snap off a scale from the pine cone and cut it in half crosswise leaving the rounded edge.  Again using tweezers, super glue (rounded end up) the cut scales into the pom pom for ears.  Hot glue (or super glue) the completed hedgehog onto a round wooden disk for stability.  That’s it.  This is a simple project for kids or those who are still a kid at heart.

Go on a walk and stop to admire the majesty of Mother Nature’s work.  There is beauty in all that she creates.  The key is to slow down a bit to allow inspiration to blossom.

Jan Gowen, Kemper Horticulture Assistant

Posted in: Fall, Winter | Tags: Bur oak , hedgehog , nature crafts | Comments (0) | View Count: (1785)
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