Introduction: How to Make Plant Markers From Recycled Materials

After years of slicing up plastic yogurt containers to make weatherproof markers
for my plants, I realized I could get a lot of raw material from just one mini-blind.

A standard Mini blind will yield 160 plant markers!

Step 1: Assemble Your Supplies

Find a used venetian blind.  
I went to Freecycle and asked for broken venetian blinds had several
offers in an hour. 

Next find a pair of kitchen shears, a wash basin, a sponge, a towel,
some dish soap and a few magic markers.

Step 2: Separate Slats and Chop Them Into Segments

First snip the nylon cord which keeps the slats in place.
Then Remove each slat from the blind assembly.
You will find roughly 80 slats in a standard blind.

Next, using the even breaks created by the holes in each
slat, chop each one into three pieces.  
When I did that I ended up with 160 short segments and
80 long segments. 

Step 3: Wash and Dry All of the Segments

Dump the segments in to a bowl full of warm soapy water, and
agitate them.  Gather a handful of slats at  time, and use a sponge to
wipe them clean, rinse them a few times, and then dry them with a towel.

A paper towel will not work well :-(

Step 4: Fashion Points and Round Edges - Make Stakes

To produce half simple stakes and half T shaped markers
(The blind I used had 80 slats; so I was able to make 80 stakes and 80 T shaped markers.)

Make 3 piles of the plastic slats:
A) the long ones,
B) half of the short ones, and 
C) the other half of the short ones. 

Use the shears to cut the slats and form your new garden markers.

For all As and all Bs:
Cut one end to make a point
Pointing one end of the plastic slat will make it glide into the earth easily .

Next cut a curving edge on the other end to make them smooth.

For all Cs
Cut a curved at both ends of the slat

You have now finished making the stakes.

Step 5: Fashion Simple Vertical Stakes Into T Shaped Stakes

For each long stake (The "As" from Step 4),

you are going to fold the top over and cut two parallel snips into it.  
These will form a slot through which you can feed the short slats
(The Cs from Step 4) which have been rounded on both ends. 

Notice that each slat has a curve to it, holding the convex side up,
fold about 3/4" of the end over to bend it over.   After you do this,
you should be holding something which will appear concave on
both the top side and the underside.  Making a fold in the other
direction will cause the plastic to shatter when you cut it.

Finally feed the shorter slats; the Cs through the slot in all of the long slats; the As.

Step 6: Voila! You're Done

Experiment with colored markers and other methods,
like labelers, to attractively label your markers!

** After writing this "unique" Instructable I found MoutainManna                       **
** already published a similar Instructable almost a year ago!  ;-)                   **
** Her instructable includes a valuable caution about using the                      **
** plastic in older blinds.                                                                                           **
**                                                                                                                                    **
** One could also use tin snips to make markers out of aluminum blinds.   **