Wine corks have an amazing range of uses – footwear soling, soundproofing, the heads of badminton shuttlecocks, floor tiles, fishing floats…the list goes on and on. And the good news about this incredibly useful, incredibly used piece of modern technology is that It’s renewable, recyclable and biodegradable. But that’s the cork straight off the tree, prior to shaping, whittling and molding. If you’re loathe to pop those super-useful bottle stoppers into a bag bound for your local collection centre – how about decorating your house with tiny cork gardens? Here is how to make a wine cork garden.
- Grab the biggest cork you can find (one that is still a little moist, so it doesn’t crumble) and a small cross-headed screwdriver, and poke the screwdriver into the cork until it’s around halfway down the cork. Alternately? Use a drill (as long as you’re careful not to snap the cork with the force of the bit’s rotation).
- Now replace that screwdriver with the thinnest penknife blade available to you – and twist it carefully, hollowing out the center of the cork. If you have access to some professional woodworking tools, look for a thin curved chisel-like blade suited for this very purpose.
- Is your cork sufficiently hollowed out? Time to pop a seed in there and cover it with potting soil. The most popular choice for these cork planters are succulents (pictured above) – they’re compact, easy to maintain and incredibly cute when they start sprouting.
- All done, barring the first round of watering? Now you need to think about how to display them. You can stack them next to each other in a flat tray, which makes watering a doddle – but if you want to send the cuteness levels through the roof, glue a small round magnet onto one side of each cork…and stick them onto your fridge.
- Water carefully and regularly. Succulents need to breathe, so
air-permeable cork is ideal – but it also means they can dry up
quickly. If they’re looking parched, dip the bottom half of the cork in a
bowl of water as well as dripping water over the plant in the top.
Lastly, keep an eye on the ones getting too big for their corks –
that’ll be the time to give them room to grow by repotting them