Peppermint Bugs

Peppermint bugs are funny little creatures made with fresh mint.

They make great garden friends and are perfect for when a bit of herby fun is in order.

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This project came about when I was looking for ways to give kids a hands on experience with mint.  Actually I wasn't sure how well the bugs would be received.  Luckily the kids really did get excited about making these funny looking things.

Note:  You could use any aromatic plant with flexible stems for this project such as lemon balm, lavender, anise hyssop or even basil.

What you need...

  • Fresh Peppermint Stems, 2 to 3 for each each doll.
  • Chenille Stems, any color works, we used sparkly ones for the wings.  You will need 2 for each doll.
  • Markers
  • Large Unfinished Wooden Beads
  • Scissors
  • Optional ~ Glue Gun and Beads with large holes

How To Do It... Give your child a wooden bead to decorate for the bug's head.  Next have your child choose two  chenille stems, one for the body and the other for the wings/antenna.  Cut the chenille stem meant for the wings/antenna into two pieces.  One piece being about a 1/3 of the whole stem, this piece will be the antenna.

Take a couple of stalks of peppermint and line them up with the ends overlapping each other to create one long line of peppermint with the leafy tops pointing away from each other.

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Center the chenille stem over the peppermint.

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Bend the chenille stem/peppermint bundle into equal halves to create a loop in the center.

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Push the bent part up through the wooden bead just far enough to thread the antenna chenille stem through to loop you created.

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If you want, add a small bead to the bug's' head by pushing both ends of the antenna chenille stem through the small bead then bend this second chenille stem around on itself to create antenna. Pull the peppermint and chenille stem down to the height you want it to be at on the bugs' head.

You may want to use a glue gun here to secure the head onto the stems even more.  If that is so, shove the glue gun up into the wooden bead and squeeze in some glue.

Next take another chenille stem, sparkly if you have it, and wind it around the bugs upper body to create wings.

mintbug
mintbug

Now you are done and you have an aromatic little friend to play with!

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These little creatures will only last a day or so before they dry up and get crumbly.  So make sure you are ready to play with them right after you make them.