Lambs Ear Love

may-26-2008-099-2Won’t you please gather around in a nice circle for another installment of plant profiles. No need to crowd, there is plenty of room for all. Make yourselves comfortable, pillows anyone? Okay then. The chosen plant today is lamb’s ear.may-26-2008-102-2Stachys byzantina, Lamb’s Ear flowers in late spring and early summer, plants produce tall spike-like stems with a few reduced leaves. The flowers are small and either white or pink. The plants tend to be evergreen but can “die” back during cold winters and regenerate new growth from the crowns. In warmer climates they may grow year-round, but suffer where it’s hot and humid. They are easy to grow, preferring partial shade to full sunlight and well-drained soils not rich in nitrogen, so says our go to source of information, Wikipedia. This plant grows so easily here that we almost consider it a weed. What a big mistake, for it fills the bill of the new Semi-Piet design school we have adopted. This is the evergreen, or make that ever silver with the larger leaf to combat our little leaf syndrome. It can crowd out other companions in the garden beds, but is easily pulled when it gets rambunctious.  Sun or shade, wet or dry, well we don’t really have any wet on our sloping land, but there is no spot here where this will not thrive.may-26-2008-091-21Now we come to the real reason we are showcasing this plant, it’s craft uses. The velvety leaves are perfect for children’s gardens for they invite petting. Or picking. Or lamb making. Several years ago I made many of these little lambs from the flower stalks and gave them as Christmas presents.december-4-2008-004I still have several and they have held up well but being made of dried plant material are still rather delicate. I think a couple of ears may have been lost in the storage box. Each one has a personality of its own. I love the idea of lambs as a Christmas decoration, signifying the stable mates of the manger.december-4-2008-008-2The time to make these is during the growing season when the material is fresh and pliable. The flower stalks are cut and the larger poufy bits are used for the body and head with smaller poufy bits for the neck and upper legs.  Leafless stalks are the legs and tiny leaves are the ears. The tail is a tiny bit of poufy stuff.  Black peppercorns are the eyes.  The ever trusty hot glue gun holds them together.  Start with the body, attach a neck, then head.  Next join the leg stalks to the upper legs then glue to the body.  I leave them a little longer to be able to trim them so the lambs can stand.  Add the tail, ears and eyes and you have created a sweet little gift or decoration for yourself.  One or a group, they always bring a smile. Added: For a detailed how to on making the little lamb, click here-How To Make A Lamb’s Ear Lamb.

may-26-2008-088-2Another craft we have tried is using the flowering stalks for weavers in basket making. Still delicate but quite attractive as an occupant on a shelf or table. The weaving is done with freshly cut material that can be bent without breaking. It is messy with loose leaves and flowers all around, watch out for hungry bees too, this is best done outside in a comfortable chair in the shade. Make sure everything is dry, same with the lambs, we don’t want any mold to develop.  The stakes of this basket are dappled willow stems and the bottom is a combination of iris leaves and purchased reed, a common basket making material, for strength at the turn from bottom to sides, a basket’s weakest point.  (I do plan to do a basket post later, even though I have stopped making new ones, maybe).may-26-2008-089-2The fresh leaves can be glued to nearly any surface. Styrofoam hearts were made as decorations for offspring Semi’s wedding several years ago. They still look pretty good and make nice Valentine’s Day decor.  For these we just used white craft glue instead of the glue gun.may-26-2008-087-2More wedding crafts, these were marked down metal Easter buckets from a craft store with the leaves glued on. They were used to hold a row of silver dichondra and flowering annuals. They made a simple yet elegant presentation.michael2Here is a shot from the wedding in progress. The lambs ear buckets are displayed on the antique pump organ in the old pre civil war wooden church in our area. A friend’s daughter played the violin and the whole scene was the stuff of dreams. Little offspring of offspring Chickenpoet, MA as ringbearer, aged five at the time, was mesmerized by both the music and the musician. His sense of wonder permeates this photo, and wonderful it was. I still tear up just gazing at this picture.march-28-2008-027-2Quality time has been spent searching for photos of this plant in the back garden. This little patch near the stone steps is the only one I could find, although it is growing here and there along the slope.may-9-2008-1This photo was featured in the May bloom day post and the lambs ear is just barely even visible, but since this is one of my favorite shots of the garden, it deserves to be shown again. The scotch moss, Sagina subulata ‘Aurea’ is blooming along with dianthus and a volunteer fern leaf bleeding heart at the lower left.  During the cold months many an hour is spent studying the spring garden on the computer files.  It is transporting and plants the seeds for future plans for when that spellbinding time returns.
Frances

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63 Responses to Lambs Ear Love

  1. tina says:

    Now next year there will be little lambs all over the world-all owing to you. I will be on of them out there picking the blooms to make those lambs. They are so cool. You never fail to amaze me Frances.

    I have a short story (of course), do you know when I moved here I actually had to buy lambs ears? Can’t believe it now as it has taken over here, and it is one plant that actually self seeds here. lol If anyone ever needs lambs ears-do not buy it! Find a friend quick.

    Hi Tina, thanks. A world full of little lambs ear lambs sounds like a wonderful place! I bought my first lambs ear too, Tina, in Augusta, GA! Of course one plant is all it takes. I used it in an herb garden in the first TN house as the edging. It had to be dug up constantly as it tried to take over. I was hoping that you noticed that the photo of it by the driveway is also where I moved the gaura, they can fight it out over who wants to rule the bed. Neither of them can compete with the black seeded pennisetum Moudry though, HA.
    Frances

  2. nancybond says:

    How very beautiful! I adore the little lambs ear heart! And those lambs! That’s reason enough to include the plant in any garden.

    Hi Nancy, thanks so much, it is sweet and still looks pretty good for being five years old. I need to use the lambs ear more for the color and leaf form, just keep on top of those babies!
    Frances

  3. Dave says:

    Very creative! I wouldn’t have thought of any of those ideas for lambs ear. That stone stairway with the Scotch moss is great! Scotch moss is on my seed list this winter.

    Hi Dave, thanks. If you can wield a hot glue gun, you can make these easily. The scotch moss is a wonderful plant. I have never seen it grown from seed, but one plant will get you on your way, it can be divided like crazy. It is very drought tolerant too, something we need for the summers here, although it has been fairly wet recently, hooray!
    Frances

  4. Hey Tina–I bought my first lamb’s ears, too! They’ll even grow here, where they seldom get any water. They tend not to take over, though, because of the lack of water, I suppose…But you are right–there are probably plenty of people willing to share theirs!

    Hi Susan, thanks for visiting and welcome. We do find the lambs ear to be quite drought tolerant here too in TN. They did not like it in my Houston garden though.
    Frances

  5. Sylvia (England) says:

    We have a lot in our local gardens as well Frances, but they do need the sun here or they go green, leggy and include to rot. I am still looking for the right place for them in my own garden – freebies of course. But I have never seen them used in crafts before.

    The picture of your daughter’s wedding bought tears to my eyes, it is so beautiful, so touching.

    Best wishes Sylvia (England)

    Hi Sylvia, thanks for stopping by. There are occasional losses when they just seemed to choke each other out, young plants are best, so it will be my duty to keep the patch fresh. That bed by the driveway is totally neglected and some of it dies out, but comes back from seeds later. I mow the whole thing once a year. The leaves certainly lend themselves to being glued to stuff. Thanks about the wedding, it was a lot of work, we did every bit of it ourselves from making the paper for the invitations to all the decorations and flowers. That is one of my favorite photos of the wedding, and doesn’t even show the bride and groom!
    Frances

  6. Frances I think those have got to be some of the cutest garden crafts I have ever seen. I have always recommended lamb’s ear for gardening with childred but have never actually seen them made into lambs…so very clever you are! Super excellent post (as always!!!) Kim

    Hi Kim, thanks so much. Lambs ear always gets the attention of the kids when they visit here, young and old. I cannot take the credit for dreaming up the lambs, saw it in a book long ago, herbs for Christmas, or something like that. There were no instructions, so I had to figure out what would work, but really like the finished product. Super easy too.
    Frances

  7. Gail says:

    Frances, I am totally enchanted by every photo in this post! My friend you are a gifted gardener and crafter! The Scotch Moss has captured my attention, don’t you think it will look lovely in the back garden at C&L! Wow to the dianthus, as well. Lambs Ear isn’t happy in my soggy winter soil, but I continue to move it about to see where it might be happy… right now, it looks like the Cedar Glade Bed will be a good spot…even tho it’s not a cedar glade plant. It’s a replacement for my fav bad boy Verbascum thapsis. Have a sweet day…I can’t believe this oddly cold weather we’re having, keep warm and dry! Gail

    Hi Gail, thanks. The scotch moss looks good anywhere you plant it, but does not like to be covered up by its neighbors or leaves, or anything for that matter. I find that the plants have a tendency to kind of die out, so it is best to replace the old patches with younger material, easily found elsewhere. Today is a hot chocolate kind of day here too.
    Frances

  8. I love all of the craft projects that you’ve made using lambs ear! I had no idea one can make little lambs from these! I have ‘Helen von Stein’ and she doesn’t bloom. She has big ears, so I like the idea of using the leaves.

    That wedding must have been just so romantic and gorgeous. That’s a wonderful photo.

    Thanks,
    Cameron
    (back in the land of hi-speed networking!)

    Hi Cameron, hooray for your return to the world of high speed! I often wish I had the non blooming one, but then wouldn’t have the stalks for crafts. I used to feel compelled to cut down the spent stalks, and still do in certain beds. I mow the front island once a year in January and that neatens up the whole thing and spreads the seeds everywhere. Thanks about the wedding. It was a high point of our lives. I love that photo, he was in awe. The guests were being seated behind him, but he was oblivious to everything but the music and the lovely girl playing it. True enchantment.
    Frances

  9. Robin says:

    How cute! The lamb is a perfect craft to make from lambs ear! You are so very clever!

    Hi Robin, thanks so much. I had seen a picture of a manger scene in a book once with the lambs ear lamb. They were easy to make too.
    Frances

  10. Marnie says:

    Frances, what great ideas. Those little lambs would be perfect tree ornaments. Next year I will collect plenty of material and try making some. I’m not completely sure I know what part of the plant those little puff balls come from…

    I like the idea of covering something round with the leaves for tree ornaments. I like a tree with lots of ‘natural’ stuff;)
    Marnie

    Hi Marnie, thanks. These would be perfect for a nature themed tree. The puff balls are the things on the stalks in the first two photos. If you have the flowering type of lambs ear, there is a sterile one that will only give you the leaves. Most people don’t want the flowering kind, because it seeds all over the place.
    Frances

  11. Frances, your use of the lambs ear leaves and flower stalks is so ingenious and artistic!
    And how cool to see one of the old-fashioned cottage-type plants in the spotlight.

    Lambs ears grew well and increased in Illinois during the summer, but sometimes after a bad winter I’d have just a few live pieces.

    Lambs ears also seem to be temperamental in our Austin climate. At my first Texas house I couldn’t get them to grow and knew other people whose attempts failed over and over.
    But at this house a division from a friend was planted 4 years ago. It took off and the bounty has been divided and passed along. One recipient was the friend who first gave it to me! Although she’d had a large patch, all of it died suddenly, melted in a bad bout of heat and humidity.

    Usually I cut off the stalks as soon as they appear because the pinkish color doesn’t work with the other flowers in the bed…maybe next year instead of tossing them in the compost your post will come to mind and I’ll try one of your craft ideas. Thank you!

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

    Hi Annie, so nice to see you here! Thanks for stopping by. The lambs ear is hardly the darling of designers anymore, but it is the answer to my design dilemmas with the larger leaf and evergreen habit. I just have to keep on top of its reproductive proclivities. At one time I wanted the lambs ear to be the lawn substitute in the front, but big patches of it would die out, choking themselves I think. I ripped it all out, but seeds remained and it keeps popping up. It then gets moved to a spot needing that leaf interest. Good deal on you being able to give it back to the originator, cool karma! Since you cut the stalks anyway, try a couple of lambs!

    Frances

  12. I have lots of it in my yard and always am pleased to see it in new places. But I’ve never seen it bloom! What do I need to do to encourage this?

    Hi Jill, I was going to say that maybe you had the kind that did not bloom, but if it has spread to new places, I would think it is seeding, so must be blooming. More sun would make more flowers would be my best guess of what you might try.
    Frances

  13. ourfriendben says:

    Ohmigod Frances, those little lambs are the cutest things ever!!! I love lamb’s ears and grow them around the Pullet Palace, where they provide a beautiful silvery groundcover for the rudbeckias. But I’ve always thought the flowers were hideous, though of course I left them on for the bees’ enjoyment. This growing season, they’ll have to share—I want to try to make a lamb or two myself! They remind me of Tasha Tudor and her endless creativity. Marvelous! And I agree with Cameron that Semi’s wedding sounds lovely beyond words.

    Hi OFB, thanks. I didn’t like the flowers much either and always cut them in the past. Then got lazy in the front garden and left them. It is an acquired taste, to see the beauty in all the spent stalks around the garden. I am getting into the swing of that. I was making a basket when it was time to cut the stalks and just started weaving them in, this is not very sturdy, more of an ornamental basket. Do try with the lambs, you will be surprised how easily they go together. The fuzzy bits take well to the hot glue too. Thanks for the wedding words, it was simple, since we did it ourselves and only had my garden plant material or what was available at the nurseries to work with. The church is actually located on the land of a favorite nursery close by. We did mail order the calla lilies for Semi’s bouquet, and bought some things from the grocer’s too, hypericum berries and roses. We saved lots of money and it was still nice. Pleasant memories.
    Frances

  14. rochelle says:

    I love the little sheep – -what a great idea…you should sell them on etsy or something!! too cute! in fact…I am so inspired that I would liek to blog about them on my own blog…studio g (http://studiog.greayer.com) – best rochelle

    Hi Rochelle, thanks so much. I used to make various things to sell, but am retired from that now. Anything made now is given as a gift to friends and family. Glad to be inspiration, for these are quite easy to make. All you need is a hot glue gun and the lambs ear in flower.
    Frances

  15. Darla says:

    Who knew? This is the first year I have planted Lambs Ear in the ground, it’s doing quite well. I still have a medium size container filled with it. After seeing this it’s going in the ground as well!! Didn’t realize it had so many uses. Love the buckets for the wedding and the hearts!!

    Hi Darla, thanks. The lambs ear is super useful with the silvery color, really good for the winter garden. The craft uses are just a bonus to its garden value. Have fun with it!
    Frances

  16. Lovely post,
    lovely lambs
    But REALLY lovely baskets –
    Frances you are so creative in a myriad of ways.
    K

    Hi Karen, thanks so much, that is a high compliment coming from one as talented as you. So glad you liked them. I have made many many baskets and sold quite a few too. I will post about them some time when my brain can think of nothing else. :-)
    Frances

  17. Amy says:

    Lamb’s ears have been on my wish list, but thanks to this post they’ve just become part of my mental “must have as soon as possible!” list. I had no idea they were so versatile for crafting – amazing what you have done with the leaves, stalks, and flowerheads. what a great post!

    Hi Amy, thanks. This is right up your alley, being so crafty and a gardener. All you need is one plant for they spread by seed and can be divided, really have to be divided or they choke themselves out. Make sure it is the flowering kind and not the sterile Helen Von Stein. :-)
    Frances

  18. Lovely lambs – great fun. I pulled up my lambs ears this year, and now I regret it :-(
    The heart looks like it’s covered in angels wings.

    Hi Happy, thanks. I pulled all mine up also, but luckily the seeds were still around and they all came back! Maybe you will get some next year. The leaves make anything look magical and fuzzy!
    Frances

  19. Cindy says:

    And now I know what to do with all the lambs ear that springs up in greater and greater quantities! Those lambs are sooooo cute. And I love the other projects as well. What wonderful wedding memories your daughter must have. It looks like it was perfect and all the more so from the personal touches!

    Hi Cindy, thanks. If you already have a bunch of lambs ear, you are half way there! They are easy to make and long lasting, if not handled (by small children :-) ). The wedding was a wonderful and the memories of it are treasured. This particular photo, though transcends the wedding itself.
    Frances

  20. Siria says:

    Oh Frances…I want to be the first to sign up for your gardening/craft/party planning classes! I love Lamb’s Ear, but never knew you could make these wonderful projects out of them. I will definitely be trying these out next summer. I think they would look beautiful on a Christmas tree. I am now looking forward to reading your basket weaving post.

    I also love the scotch moss tucked in between the stone steps. I don’t think I have ever seen it at a nursery. Do you mail order it? Does it spread easily?

    I guess the highlight of this post for me was that one photograph of your daughters wedding. What a lovely wedding it must have been! Even though your grandson has his back to us in the photo, I can visualize his mesmerized face.

    Thank you for another wonderful read!

    How sweet you are, Siria! Thanks for all those kind thoughts. You don’t need a class for the lambs ear lambs, I never get tired of saying that, all you need is a glue gun and the flower stalks freshly picked. Each one is unique. The scotch moss is often sold here in the spring with the ground covers at local nurseries, along with creeping thymes usually. I have found the golden scotch sagina to be hardier than the green irish moss sagina too. It spreads some by itself, but I have spread little bits of it between the rocks. It struggles some in the heat of summer but looks great all winter here. Thanks for that about the wedding. We had a great time putting together the whole thing, we did start several months in advance. Once we booked the church, the rest was up to us, however we wanted to do it. It was in August and the little church was packed and had no air conditioning. We thought the groom in his suit was going to pass out! Even the pastor wore a short sleeve shirt, no tie or jacket, as did my husband as he walked her down the aisle. All the windows were open, it was really something wonderful. I even took the pictures, along with a friend’s husband. Very affordable and nice wedding. As you can see, I could go on and on about it. :-)
    Frances

  21. Jean says:

    How cool. I never would have thought of any of those ideas although I’ve always thought there was something else they might be good for. (I tried to grow them in Austin but they always eventually gave up. They would probably do the same here in Louisiana too.) Frances, you are one clever woman!

    Hi Jean, thanks. I did see the idea for the lamb in a book years ago and remembered it as being pretty cool. Mine might be different, but they came out looking like lambs anyway. This plant grows almost too well here, so there needed to be something to do with all those stalks. The basket really used up a lot of those. I had sold several baskets with this material, very popular if somewhat delicate.
    Frances

  22. tina says:

    I see it now Frances. Those two whites look great together. I think they will be happy together too, money is on the lamb’s ear. lol

    Hi Tina, good. Don’t be so sure about it, the gaura has roots to China and is much taller. It works and I like the look. The bees love having lots of flowers to visit from both too.
    Frances

  23. tina says:

    Forgot to say, I am glad I am not the only one who has had to buy lambs ear. I just think we gardeners should NEVER let another buy it if we can help it.

    Hi Tina again, so true. This is a plant that I have left in piles by the street and people come and pick it up. It really needs to be thinned and that is a good way to do it. Someone always takes it the first day.
    Frances

  24. Rhonda says:

    Frances
    OMG you are just so creative. I love lambs ear, have alot of it in the garden and I love to rub it and show it to people who come in the garden, they always ooh and aah and ask what it is. But I never, never thought about using it in crafts..i have no idea why..creative juice was apparently not flowing. The little sheep are just adorable and I absoloutely love the heart..what a fantastic idea for christmas ornaments. Question…were the leave glued on while they were green and then allowed to brown? Wonderful!

    Hi Rhonda, thanks so much. About the leaves, for any project where I am gluing them, I pick them trying to get ones with no tears or imperfections, then stack them neatly with a book or something like that on top to keep them from curling. I try to use them that day but a few hours after picking is okay. Always leave lots of overlap, for the shrink quite a bit as they dry. As I mentioned all those crafts are at least five years old and have held up well. Using perfect leaves is key. Apply the glue to the edges and points of the leaves, that is to keep them from curling up, the centers don’t really need any glue. Good luck with your projects!
    Frances

  25. Barbarapc says:

    Oh Frances, so completely sweet. I’ll never look at another lambs ear without smiling and remembering your little lamby-kins. Just lovely.

    Hi Barbara, thanks so much. They are endearing. I sort of have a collection of lambs made of various materials. I made some out of the salt dough back in the 1970’s that were cute too, a whole manger animal group. Always a good Christmas theme.
    Frances

  26. Lythrum says:

    Very clever uses for the plants. I have seen them growing wild but never grown them (or made lambs out of them!). I like the pictures.

    Hi Lythrum, thanks. I didn’t know this was a wild plant, but it is similar to the fuzzy leaved mullein.
    Frances

  27. Brenda Kula says:

    Oh Frances, how fun!!! I absolutely adore Lamb’s Ear. And it’s hot and humid here much of the time, so often it succumbs. I got one a few months back, and so far so good…
    Brenda

    Hi Brenda, thanks so much. It dies back in places here too, and I pull up the dead parts but it seems to regrow from any root left in the ground, and/or seeds. I could not get it going in Houston, though maybe in a raised bed or container with cactus mix it would thrive. Good luck with yours.
    Frances

  28. Love lamb’s ears too! I want one of your little precious lambs. I agree that it is so appropriate for now.

    All these things you have done with the lamb’s ears and the very beautiful wedding are all the grandest things I’ve seen. So unique for a wedding. It was so classy.

    Hi Anna, thanks. You can easily make some lambs next spring when the plants bloom, all you need is a glue gun. About the wedding, it did come out nicely and the soft lambs ear was a good theme. We also used lots of English ivy swags, since we had it growing along our long wall in back. After the wedding we ripped it all out, way too aggressive but it was free plant material for the wedding and looked perfect. Thanks for those kind words about it.
    Frances

  29. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    Those little lambs are great Frances. I think you can do about anything. The hearts, buckets and that BASKET. Wow.

    Hi Lisa, thanks for that. I took many many basket making classes, to learn how to make them but also for the fun we had visiting with each other. I became good friends with the teacher too. The other stuff was easy, just use some glue! :-)
    Frances

  30. Cinj says:

    Geez, that lamb’s ear is a giant! I’ve got one in my yard but it’s nowhere near that big. I love the soft leaves. Looks like you’ve got plenty of leaves for new projects too. Very cute. If I made those the cats would have them broken already. They ruin so many things sometimes, the silly little monsters!

    Hi Cinj, thanks. My plant eating cat Hazel would definitely go for these, they are put up high on a shelf that she cannot get to. Preventative measures here! The photo by the driveway is tens if not hundreds of plants that have self sown over the years. I pull them out when they get overgrown, but they always grow back and seem to be better for the thinning.
    Frances

  31. chuck b. says:

    What inspired craftwork, Frances! In a million years, I’m sure none of this would have occurred to me. Adorable little lambs and groovy Easter buckets! What kind of glue? The passalong lambs ears are lagging. Maybe it’s been too cold for them to establish here.

    Hi Chuck, thanks so much. I did see a picture of something like the lamb in a book one time. The glue I used is called Tacky Glue, a fast drying craft glue sold in the craft department of Walmart or craft stores like Michaels. Sorry to hear about the lagging lambs ears, did you get any seeds in the bag, there should have been many. If not and there is a failure, I can send more. They like the cold better than the heat and should rise from the dead in time. I have seen them begin to grow from a pile of roots exposed to the air and sun.
    Frances

  32. shirl says:

    Wonderful stuff Frances, I guessed you had seriuosly crafty soul! What a wonderful set of ideas and the lamb does steal the show.

    Ah… this is a favourite plant for me too – at least I so want it to be. As Sylivia from England says, here in Scotland too they can get leggy and the damp conditions don’t really suit it. I have added and removed it many times over the years. However, it is in my silver border at the moment. I have also put it in a hanging basket and it can do fine there for a while then I cut it back to get new growth again. The texture of the leaves is the attraction for me.

    An inspiring post Frances – I particularly like the use of the leaves glued to pots :-D

    Hi Shirl, thanks, I do like to do crafts, but have to be in the proper frame of mind. Now gardening, I can do that anytime! :-) It does a die back here on occasion and needs to be divided with the newer pieces replanted. Drainage is important, the hanging basket is a great idea and probably looks wonderful. The leaf adds so much to any planting and is worth the extra effort to keep it going nicely. The leaves can be glued to most anything and look great.
    Frances

  33. Kim says:

    I loved this post, and the things you do with Lambs ear leaves is marvelous! I was just fascinated with the basket – it’s spectacular! Your posts always exercise my imagination and make me smile.

    Hi Kim, thanks so much. The lambs ear is such a marvelous and soft plant, the crafts are limitless that can be done with it. I did take many many basket making classes to learn how to make lots of different types of baskets with materials growing in my garden, the goal of the classes for me. Thanks for those sweet words, that makes me smile too. :-)
    Frances

  34. VP says:

    Hi Frances – I’ve lots of Stachys in the garden too because the bees love it. I never even thought of using it to get crafty!

    Have a great weekend :)

    Hi VP, thanks. Good deal on the stachys already growing, don’t the bees just find it irresistable? Now you can get in touch with your crafty inner child. :-) You too have a wonderful weekend.

    Frances

  35. Delilah says:

    Wow! What great ideas! I am planning on creating a garden starting next spring and will certainly plan on growing these plants.
    i’m sure I’ll have a few lamby’s hanging around the house but I think I could even think up a bunch of ideas to use those leaves!

    Hi Delilah, thanks so much. Good luck with your garden planning, lambs ear is an excellent starter plant too, it fills in quickly and seeds nicely. There are many things that can be done with the leaves and stems, have fun thinking of ways to use them.
    Frances

  36. joey says:

    You have made me so sad reading this delightful post, Frances, especially the photos of your dear little lambs. I confess to a terrible deed … my rambunctious lambs ear got the best of me and I ripped it all out (I do that sometimes as my garden evolved over these past 30 years). So there I said it … and come spring, I will again invite the silvery friend back home … because now I’m lonesome.

    Hi Joey, thanks, LOL, I did the same thing, only I didn’t get all the roots and it came back and had even self seeded. It can get overwhelming and needs ruthless thinning, but will look even better after that. Are you sure it won’t surprise you with some babies?
    Frances

  37. Racquel says:

    It’s a great perennial to have in the garden. I like the silvery leaves and it makes a nice filler.

    Hi Racquel, that’s the way I think of it too, as a filler with leaf interest. It does have much winter interest with the spent flower stalks left standing, normally I cut those down sooner than now, we will be awash in baby seedlings next spring!
    Frances

  38. dawn says:

    Hi Frances, Had to come and check out the lambs and how cute! Love the baskets too, I’ll have to remember these, using things from nature is rewarding to me. I’ve never seen the lambs before but I’ll bet one plant will make a entire flock!

    Hi Dawn, thanks and welcome. One stalk of the lambs ear can make one lamb with leftovers! I loved your hemlock pinecone basket, and have lots of those tiny cones, I need to make something with them too, thanks for the inspiration. :-)
    Frances

  39. Hi Frances, I’ve made bows out of the lamb’s ear and used them on simple bouquets of flowers like lavender, etc. Sort of “tussie mussies” and gave them to my little nieces. They loved them, and now they are nearly grown but remember me making them these every summer.

    Hi Carol, I seem to remember making bows with the leaves one year too, they did not hold up well if the packages were stack on top of each other, but looked cute. There was something red in the center too, maybe dried roses, also fragile but cute. I’ll bet your nieces loved those little bouquets too, if only I had some female little ones in the family. But the big females would probably love them too, thanks for the idea!
    Frances

  40. Genevieve says:

    I just found this post and I am utterly charmed by the lambs. I only wish I still had some lamb’s ears to cut back. I suppose I shall have to wait until next year – but gosh, I am so taken with them NOW!

    Thank you so much for this amazing idea.

    Hi Genevieve, thanks and welcome. We all will have to wait until next year to make these, more for me, because even though my stalks are still standing, the material needs to be fresh and pliable. Do give them a try though, so easy and quick, all you need is a glue gun!
    Frances

  41. I ADORE those little lambs!!! :) Too cute–and I actually really like the buckets as well.

    Hi Kim, thanks, the buckets were great, but have suffered from being stacked, the other things have held up well. Like you, our winter came about too fast for some of the plants to color up properly, the oak leaf hydrangea in particular. Now we are in the depths of coldness and it isn’t even officially winter yet. I have been quite the whiner about it too! :-)
    Frances

  42. patsi says:

    I can’t believe you made little lambs.
    How on earth did you think of that one?
    Wish I could hold the little guys in my hands, I bet they’re sooo soft.
    Talk about talented…WOW !

    Hi Patsi, thanks so much. I did make them, a few years ago. I had seen a photo in a book about Christmas crafts using herbs of a manger scene with the lambs made from lambs ear and wanted to make them, having so much of the stuff. They are quite light and delicate. You could easily make some yourself, give it a try next year when they are blooming. Maybe I should do a recycle posting then to remind people that were interested.
    Frances

  43. Anne says:

    Those lambs are wonderful! and i’d have never thought to use the leaves like you have, what beautiful texture. You are one creative gal!

    Hi Anne, thanks. Those soft silvery leaves are just begging to be glue to things! HA I am basically thrifty, that starts the crafts, seeing something in a photo that sparks an *I can do that* moment, rather than buy the thing, and wanting to use what is growing in the garden.
    Frances

  44. Debi says:

    Well, I never. The basket is gorgeous, and I’m especially fond of using the leaves to cover pots and buckets and whatnot. You are amazing.

    Hi Debi, HA, that is a funny expression to me, no matter what brings it on! Thanks for those words of praise. I am motivated to find uses for things so as not to spend money but still have pretties around the house, or for a wedding. Talk about motivation to save money, those events can cost plenty. :-)
    Frances

  45. gittan says:

    Lambs ears are lovely! I adore your lambs, so cute they are. Really amazing that they are made only by plant material. I’ve thought about making eggs, made by styrofoam-eggs and lams ears. The hearts were also nice. Have a nice day / gittan

    Hi Gittan, thanks so much. I see that you have a lot of heart shaped things at your place too, you need to have some lambs ear hearts to bring the garden inside! :-) Eggs would be easy and fun too.
    Frances

  46. Monica says:

    Love the lamb’s ear lambs–how clever!!

    Hi Monica, thanks so much. Loved your gingerbread house for the squirrels too!
    Frances

  47. That is some creative stuff! I love it too and am inspired to make something original too. Thanks
    Shirley

    Hi Shirley, thanks so much. I know you can find something original and creative, since you are loaded with both talents. :-)
    Frances

  48. semi says:

    I need some moss for the hill. Those little lamb’s are so sweet. You are so creative. I think I have one little patch of lamb’s ear that survived on the hill. Love semi

    Hello dear Semi, facing west, I’m not sure that moss would survive the scalding sun of summer. Once some of the trees and shrubs grow and provide more shade, the scotch moss would be more likely to survive. Lambs ear would be a great addition to the hill and we have plenty. Next time we work there, I will bring some up.
    Love, Frances

  49. Pia says:

    Stunning creative work! I used to have lamb’s ears in my garden but I… hm, got rid of them since I thought they were a bit slimey, *so sorry about that lamb’s ears*. Now I wish I hadn’t of course. Maybe I should get myself some new ones, that I’ll be kinder with, come spring.

    Hi Pia, thanks and welcome. You are absolutely right, they can get slimey, but I have found if you leave a little bit of root in the ground when you pull them up, they will grow back nicely, until the next slime episode!
    Frances

  50. cheryl says:

    I love your imagination making the sheep, baskets and the heart, wonderful ! I’ve grown lambs ears for years usually buying new plants in Spring as they tend not to survive the Ontario winters no matter the protection I give them. When it does grow every one has to be stroked by a leaf causing giggles. The MA was definitely in the moment, beautiful ! I’m so captivated by your site I’m catching up :)

    Hi Cheryl, thanks so much. I’m glad you replace the lambs ear but sorry it doesn’t make it through the winter for you. Good drainage is key, it grows well in gravel, or even the pavement of the street here. Thanks for commenting about MA, his initials BTW, he was totally unaware of a church full of people behind him, the violinist was awe inspiring. Please feel free to spend as much time as you like looking at the older posts, hope you enjoy them.
    Frances

  51. This is my first time to visit your blog- fall in love whit the lambheart
    Maria i Sennan

    Hi Maria, thanks so much and welcome. I am so glad you liked the lambs ear crafts. They were fun and very easy to make.
    Frances

  52. May I link to your blog on my blog-it’s fun to read about another part of the world-and may I use the lambheart picture for the link
    Did you see my heart on the tree?
    Have a wonderfull day………
    Maria i Sennan

    Hi Maria, I have sent you an email about using the photo and linking, thanks so much for asking! I did indeed see the knotted heart on the tree, it was a delight!
    Frances

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  58. Barbara H. says:

    Oh, Frances, I am so glad you had this in the sidebar – now I see I will have to spend the next rainy day reading all your old posts! This was delightful and as always, I am so impressed with your ability to make wonderful crafts that contain the spirits that live in the garden!

    Well good! I never know if people are interested in reading the old posts unless they have googled a particular subject. Hope you enjoy them and thanks for your support!
    Frances

  59. Adnan says:

    I wasn’t meaning to post but then I saw a cool looking lamb and then I saw more.They look like dancing to me :D but they are cute.I admire your craftsmanship.You say this is 3 year old post but honestly I haven’nt seen anything like that during these years. Thumbs Up!

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