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Pencils or not?

hogweedhogweed Central ScotlandPosts: 3,991
Having struggled these last few years with permanent markers* which were not permanent,  for plastic labels I've now swapped over to wooden labels and a pencil but the pencil is too light and I can't read it. I need a dark writing pencil. So would that be a B or 2B? 

* 2 years ago or so I bought a pack containing 6 coloured permanent markers from a well known make. The writing disappeared after 5 weeks in the greenhouse. I wrote to them to express my disappointment - they sent me a pack of 2 dozen - same make!!!! 

What does everyone else use?? 
'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
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  • plant pauperplant pauper Posts: 6,234
    Lolly sticks went mouldy. Marker wore off. Labels blew away down the garden or faded.
    I find the only reliable way to identify seedlings is to take a picture and put it on here. 
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 22,809
    I'm trying pencils this year and just using up old IKEA ones that OH has had for his golf cards.  If I think about it next time I'm at the stationer's I'll get some 2B.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • FireFire LondonPosts: 7,375
    I use Write 4 All now. I have put test markers out in the garden and they have done a full year in wind and weather with the writing looking fresh and new. It claims to be fully waterproof and does seem to be. Pencil is no good, I've found out in the garden, though in greenhouses is fine. Sharpies are hopeless.
  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,160
    I use one called 'rite for all' orf something like that. Got it from Hobbycraft. But that lasts long enough for growing on seedlings for a couple of years, I don't have labels round the garden. 
  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,492
    6B pencil is what you're looking for, if you want a darker pencil.  Also sometimes called an ebony pencil.  
    Utah, USA.
  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,492
    Lolly sticks went mouldy. Marker wore off. Labels blew away down the garden or faded.
    I find the only reliable way to identify seedlings is to take a picture and put it on here. 
    I had birds pull out my white plastic markers before!  I think it was birds.. I didn't catch them in the act, but I couldn't think of anything else that would have pulled them up and out of the soil and just left them laying there.  
    Utah, USA.
  • plant pauperplant pauper Posts: 6,234
    Maybe they couldn't read them either Blue and threw them down cos they were useless!  :D
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Bath, SomersetPosts: 6,281
    I use a Brother labelling machine and print out the labels on sticky tape, which are stuck onto the usual white plastic labels. The labels themselves last but the white plastic doesn't and gets brittle. I wondered whether  the black plastic ones lasted better?
  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 5,531
    I like Sharpie brand fine line markers and I favour the compostable style of plant marker. The bonus of wood is that it sucks up the ink a bit so it seems to last longer. Fresh wood doesn't go mouldy as quickly as dry lollypop sticks. Half a cork on some scrap fencing wire works well too. 




  • DampGardenManDampGardenMan Posts: 1,054
    We use black labels (so much more elegant than the white ones :) ) and a silver Unipaint marker pen. Easy to read, and ours have lasted several years without any fading.
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