Start collecting leaves and small flowers when you are going to school, walking your dog, or hiking on a nature trail. Just watch out for poison ivy! Click here to download step-by-step instructions (PDF), provided by Ruth Pestorius, an artist who has worked with pressed flowers for more than twenty years. TIP: If you are not sure what some of these plants look like, search online or refer to a field guide on plants in your region.
Suggested plants and flowers to use for this project:
- Baby's tears - good for edging around the central image (evergreen indoor plant with tiny round leaves along a tendril)
- Bottlebrush plant
- Crepe myrtle blossoms
- Double spirea
- Fennel blooms and feathery bits
- Hydrangeas - cut small blossoms off the big clumps
- Queen Anne's lace
- Red Maple & Japanese Maple leaves
- Small roses & rose petals
- Salvia - use whole sprig or break cone blossom apart
- Other tree leaves with interesting shapes
Do not use succulents such as impatiens or begonias, because they have too much moisture. For more variety, put your plants in water colored with food dye and let them absorb the color before you press them.