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How to Make a Kissing Ball

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Locust Pods as Decorations for Kissing Balls
Use locust pods as decorations. Insert florist's wire through one end for use in craft projects.

Insert florist's wire through one end of the locust tree pod.

David Beaulieu

I have a locust tree on my street. It produces long, flattish locust pods that we're fond of calling "snakes." What we're not so fond of is raking up all these seed pods that drop on our lawn in autumn.

In my kissing ball project, though, I found a use for the locust pods as decorations -- well, one of them, at least. My idea was that, spray-painted and inserted at the bottom of the kissing ball, a locust pod would look very much like a ribbon. And since this project is about making use of natural materials when possible to create a kissing ball, I decided to use a locust pod as a "ribbon substitute."

But how would you attach a locust pod to a kissing ball? It has to be prepared in a way similar to that in which I prepared the cones: namely, it must be attached to florist's wire, which is then twisted around a plant stake. The only difference is that, unlike cones, locust pods have no scales. So, as I show in the picture, I just poked my wire (a 6-inch length is sufficient) right through one end of the locust pod. After threading half the wire through, I twisted it onto itself and then onto a plant stake.

On Page 7, I jump ahead a bit, to show how much the locust pod (spray-painted gold) resembles a gold ribbon in the finished kissing ball....

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