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“Sweet“ fakes

These faux strawberries are meant to trick birds—supposedly our feathered friends will try to eat the painted rocks and when they find the fakes inedible, they will leave the fruit alone when it ripens. Whether this works or not, they will sure be a cute addition to any garden. 


Rocks shaped like strawberries 

White primer 

Red, green, and light yellow craft paint 

Paint sealer 


Assorted paint brushes 

Fine-tipped black pen or marker 



1. Paint rocks with primer. 

2. Paint rocks with red as shown, leaving a zig-zagged area at the top for the calyx. Let dry completely. You may need two coats.

3. Paint rocks with green as shown. Let dry completely. You may need two coats. 

4. Dip toothpick into yellow paint and draw small lines to mimic seeds as shown. Let dry completely. 

5. Use black marker to trace one side of each seed to create a shadow. 

6. Coat painted rock with sealer. Let dry completely. Lay rocks in your strawberry patch. 

Cathy Monrad is the graphic designer of Upstate Gardeners’ Journal.

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