Turning  Banksia Pod Mushrooms with Indian Sandstone and Malachite Inlay

Banksia Pod

One can only turn so many banksia pod vases and pens before it starts getting boring so why not try something different today.


I like the 'alternative' comic strip art from the 60's and 70's, and for some reason magic mushrooms came to mind when looking at the seed pod holes and thinking about inlay.  Huh.  Why not give it a try.



These are quite easy to turn, so why not do a few.  Kind of funny though, as I was turning this one - at one point it looked almost exactly like a Darth Vader helmet.  I almost went with it.  A banskia pod Darth Vader helmet - that would definitely have been one of a kind.

I'm leaving some hair on these because I think it would look more natural.


I'm going to want to jazz these up a bit and I think Indian Sandstone is the way to go.  I buy these strands at Hobby Lobby.  They are only 3-4$ apiece and last quite a while.

Hole Cleaning

These mushrooms are sanded to 320 - 400 grit before adding inlay.  First the holes are cleaned out using a scratch awl and compressed air.

Arbor Press

I use a cheapo arbor press from Cummins or Harbor Freight to crush the sandstone. Use a tall can to help contain the chips.

Minimize Inlay

Bits of tissue stuffed in the banksia pod seed holes help minimize the amount of inlay you need to use.

Inlay & CA glue


Overfill  the holes, top off with thin CA glue and let dry naturally - about 24 hours.


Now what.... I think I am going to use the banksia pod odds, ends, errors, to mount the mushrooms.  This takes some experimenting.


This design looks good but it needs some more color.


I think I will add some malachite to simulate grass or moss.


I am using a semi-gloss with these.


It's a challenge figuring out how to photograph these.



More Natural

A more natural looking background?

One a difficulty scale 1 to 10,  I would give this a three.  Easy to make and kind of fun.

Other Banskia Pod Projects:

7mm Banksia Pod Pen with Inlay

Cigar Pen - Banksia Pod with Inlay

The Hairstick Chronicles - Turning an Inlaid Banskia Pod and Ebony Hairstick

Banksia Pod Vases with Inlay