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The best aspect of fairy gardens, according to Trudi Schaefer, is that most of the needed materials are only limited to one’s imagination. (Republican Eagle photos by Amanda Greenwood)

Fanciful foliage

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Sunshine, blue skies and just the right amount of breeze set the scene for a bustling farmers market Saturday at the Red Wing Depot. Among the many tents was a table full of moss, bark, twigs, sea shells and marbles.

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“Let your imagination run wild,” Trudi Schaefer told visitors at her fairy gardening tutorial.

Schaefer said that her theme of fairy gardening, so to speak, is that “kids should be able to walk out the backdoor to make anything.”

With a little bit of creativity, the outdoors becomes the best shopping ground for the tiny gardens.

“They do not have to go out and buy a bunch of materials,” she said.

Schaefer had plenty of pictures and books as examples for the gardening. One book was titled “Fairy Houses … Everywhere” highlights Schaefer’s belief that the imagination is one’s best fairy gardening tool … that and a hot glue gun.

Attendees were able to make little garden accessories, including a fairy garden gazing ball.

The gazing ball was made simply of a miniscule wood urn-shaped craft item and a marble, secured on top with the hot glue gun.

Accessories such as this added to small plants — perhaps in something as simple as a larger coffee mug — and one’s first tiny fairy garden starts to take shape.

“It’s easy to find small plants,” Schaefer said, commenting that fairy gardening has become quite popular.

She began creating fanciful fairy furnishings and gardens about three years ago. Her creativity combined with having granddaughters opened the gate to the tiny gardens.

Through her Windbeam Art and Crafts shop at www.etsy.com, Schaefer sells “faerie furnishings, holiday decorations and so much more.”

She also encouraged visitors to check out Pinterest for more fairy gardening ideas.

For more information, email windbeamfarm@gmail.com.

More from the market The next tutorial at the Red Wing Farmers Market is set for July 19 and will feature rug braiding with Dianne Aisenbrey.

Also, Lazy Acres Farm will share all about llamas.

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