They come in all shapes and sizes. They are made of everything from balloons to concrete. Every year we rummage through attics and garages to haul out boxes of them for holiday decorating. America loves its lawn decorations—we cannot get enough of them. But how do we hang onto these sometimes flighty embellishments? How do we keep the inflatable snow globe from becoming a rollaway snowball? Fortunately, there are a number of ways to secure Santa before both he and his reindeer take off.
Consider the weight of your ornament. Concrete gnomes and rebar reindeer are not likely to blow away in the wind, but they may topple—secure heavy, but narrow, vertical decorations with slender rods fastened to the backs using a compatible material (i.e., cement, metal weld, epoxy or even wire or duct tape for temporary decorations). Paint rods black to make them less visible; push opposite ends into the ground.
Anchor permanent top-heavy ornaments—such as birdbaths or urn-shaped planters—with weighted bases. Use cement to mortar them directly to wide concrete pavers.
Provide weights for inflatable decorations by using small sandbags or stones tied to them with sturdy nylon string. Or, pin them into place with tent stakes or “U”-shaped wire pins pushed firmly into the soil.
Secure valuable decorations with a lockable bicycle cable or strong chain anchored to livestock “tie-out” stakes screwed deeply into the ground, or fasten the other end to something immovable, such as a large tree or your house.
Pound sharpened wooden stakes into the ground and nail or screw them to plywood cutouts to hold those in place. Then, to ensure that they do not blow over, fasten a small hinge to the backside of your cutout, near the top. Screw a 2-inch-by-2-inch board to the other side of the hinge, and jam the board against the ground to give your cutout an easel-like support.
Things You Will Need
- (All materials are optional)
- Rods (pencil rod or rebar)
- Compatible fastener (cement, metal weld, epoxy, wire or duct tape)
- Black paint
- Concrete pavers
- Sandbags or stones
- Nylon string
- Tent stakes or "U"-shaped pins
- Lockable bicycle cable
- Tie-out stakes
- Wooden stakes
- Nails or screws
- Metal pie plates
- Eyebolts with matching washers and nuts
- Vinyl patch kit
- Velcro tape
- Hold down lightweight objects in loose soil using an old camper's trick for staking tents in sand. Drill a hole through a metal pie plate; attach an eyebolt (anchored on the opposite side with washer and nut); thread the rope through the eyebolt, and attach the other end to the object that you wish to secure into place. Bury the pie plate so that it lies flat, as deeply as possible in the loose soil. The wider surface area creates resistance to keep it from pulling out of the ground.
- Use a vinyl patch kit to invisibly weigh down inflatable ornaments. Cut a small hole in an inconspicuous place near the bottom of your ornament on the back side; use a funnel to pour sand directly into the inside bottoms; and patch and inflate.
- Use Velcro to attach lightweight ornaments directly to your house, outbuildings or trees.
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