Do you know that as far back as 2500 BC, Greek farmers used scarecrows to deter birds from stealing their crops? Today, at Lucille’s Garden we do not have birds stealing our harvest (perhaps some adventurous groundhogs) but have visitors who would enjoy seeing scarecrows as part of the rural life.
Tyler has a long history of creating scarecrows at Pumpkin Days. Families would pick out clothing from the multitude of bins. From flannel shirts to ties and jeans, each family made a friend to take home. This year, we kept the tradition of making scarecrows and invite all to visit our friends. All were fashioned by our volunteers and staff. Come and say hello. There’s even an area to capture some photos — hay bales with an extra friend or two nearby for the perfect shot. Come and see for yourself!
As part of the Artful Arboretum celebrations, we invite you to make your own. Here’s the instructions. This is a great outdoor family activity and your scarecrow will last for weeks!
SCARECROW MAKING INSTRUCTIONS
- Pantyhose with two (2) long legs (for the head)
- Long sleeved shirt (ideally with a button at the neck or a narrow neck area).
- Long pants – ideally with loops at the waist
- Straw (one bale of straw will make about 4 scarecrows)
- Twine package, needed to tie:
- Top of head (the body of pantyhose makes the head)
- Bottom of both shirt sleeves but NOT the bottom of the shirt
- Bottom of both pant legs
- Make the HEAD first:
- Make knots at the top of both pantyhose legs — using the panty hose itself (not twine).
- Fill the body of the pantyhose with hay to make a fairly large round face.
- Tie the top of the head with twine.
- Close all buttons on the shirt and any openings on the pants.
- Tie the ends of the shirtsleeves and the bottoms of the pant legs with twine.
Put the head on the table to the right. Lay out the shirt to the left and then the pants to the left of the shirt (so it looks like a person lying face up). Put a small amount of hay in the SHIRT.
- DO NOT completely fill the shirt with hay or it will be difficult to thread the pantyhose legs through the hay to the loops or holes at the top of the pants.
Attach each PANTYHOSE LEG through the shirt to the loop on the pants that is closest to the outside edge of that side of the waist.
- If there are no loops, cut one (1) hole on each side of pants about 2 inches below waist.
- Pull the pantyhose legs down fairly tight – but not so tight that the chest area is too short.
- Make strong knots to attach hose to pants.
- If holes were cut with scissors on each side of pants, pull each pantyhose leg through a hole and knot at the waist.
- DO NOT cut a hole in the shirt. It looks messy and is not needed to hold the scarecrow together.
- Fill the SHIRT and the PANTS with enough hay so that the top and bottom of the figure are well balanced. (People tend to make scarecrows that are top heavy.)
- Make sure there is a lot of hay around the neck area, or the head will bobble.
- Fill the waist with hay and the backside.
- Pull the shirt down over the top of the pants to cover the hay at the waist. Add any further decoration to your scarecrow such as felt pieces for a face, a hat, scarf, or hair and find a great place to display it!
Share your creations with us at #tylerarboretum.