DIY Mushroom Solar Light Yard Stakes

A little while ago, we posted some of the most popular pins from our Pinterest boards on our Facebook page.

A little while ago, we posted some of the most popular pins from our Pinterest boards on our Facebook page. We got a lot of positive reaction to one project in particular from our Recycled Backyard board, showing how the folks The Homestead Survival had turned thrift store crystal bowls and vases into garden “mushroom” decor. A lot of comments noted that adding solar lights to these “mushrooms” would create really neat outdoor lighting, and that thought immediately came to mind during a recent trip I made to  my local dollar store. Using some very inexpensive materials found there, I was able to create four mini mushroom solar lights for about $6. Check out the process and results below.

(1) Materials Needed:

  • Set of four small plastic “crystal” style bowls, approx. 6 inches in diameter – $1
  • Set of six plastic wine glasses – $1
  • Four solar lights – $1 each, $4 total
  • Glue Gun
  • Strip of aluminum foil

(2) Separate the top of the solar light, containing the solar panel and LED lightbulb, by twisting off from the rest of the light. (3) Apply hot glue to the top of the light, avoiding the solar panel. (4) Press the light, solar panel side with glue down, into one of the bowls and allow to cool/dry.

(5) This part is optional, but the aluminum foil helps magnify the light. Take the cup portion only (do not use the base) of a wine glass and glue a small piece of aluminum foil to the inside bottom. Then, apply a thin layer of glue to the edge of the cup, and (6) press down over the solar light into the bowl. Allow to cool/dry.

(7) Apply hot glue to the stem of the wine glass. (8) Remove the post from the solar light, and slide it down over the stem of the wine glass. Hold in place until glue cools/dries.

Place the lights in your garden where they will receive plenty of sunlight. These lamps should burn for 3-4 hours after dark. Since they’re made of plastic, they’re unlikely to last for more than a season or two, but with such a low cost per lamp, you can afford to toss the plastic in the recycling bin after a few years and make some more!

You can also do an alternate version, if you’d rather use these as table lamps instead of ground stakes. Skip steps 7 – 8 and instead snap the wine glass base into place. Now the lamp can be set on any solid surface.

A batch of these would be fun and easy to produce for your Fourth of July barbecue or other summer events. If you make these lights yourself, stop by the comments below later on and tell us about your experiences!

Jill Staake
Jill lives in Tampa, Florida, and writes about gardening, butterflies, outdoor projects and birding. When she's not gardening, you'll find her reading, traveling and happily digging her toes into the sand on the beach.