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Plant press build yourself - book press with a difference

  • you need
    • materials
    • Tool
  • building instructions
    • The boards
    • The drilling
    • Last steps
    • embellishment
  • Fill plant press
  • dry
  • Flower press and other possibilities

You want to tinker with leaves or mess up your thick old folks at the flower press ">

A plant press (also called a leaf press and flower press) can be bought in many places. However, it is also quite simple and fast self-built - a simple DIY project that does not take you an hour or so.

you need


  • two thicker wooden boards (no matter whether OSB, laminated wood, MDF or ...) - not thinner than 1.5 cm
  • four screws (hexagon screw or carriage screw) - we take 8 mm
  • four nuts (wingnuts are recommended)
  • four washers
  • Feet or wooden blocks with felt


  • Ruler, folding rule
  • pen
  • Saw (jigsaw, foxtail, japanese saw or circular saw)
  • drilling machine
  • Holzbohrer
  • clamp

building instructions

The boards

Boards can be cut to the desired size in the hardware store or timber trade.

A quick alternative is cutting boards from the kitchen. These cost a little more, but you save time and dirt.

Here we halved a 1, 5 cm thick remaining piece of OSB board (52 cm x 25 cm) in the middle to obtain two boards (26 cm x 25 cm x 1.5 cm).

The drilling

The holes are now marked in all four corners, with us it is 2 cm from the edge.

For larger or longer boards, two more holes can be drilled on the long sides, so a more even pressure builds up.

A drill press can be used to drill the most precise holes. But a normal drill, with a wood drill, is also enough.

When drilling, please make sure that the boards are exactly on top of each other and do not slip, so that the hole is straight. This can be ensured by fixing the two boards together with adhesive tape or using a screw clamp.

Tip: To avoid breakouts when drilling, place a piece of rubbish or rubbish over it. If something breaks out anyway, it's not all that bad, just an aesthetic "problem".

Last steps

When all four (eight) holes are drilled, you still mark (subtly or conspicuously) like the boards on top of each other - so you can see which edge belongs to which. Thus, the plates always come right back to each other and any inaccuracies when drilling are not noticeable.

It is recommended to glue on the bottom of the lower plate now a few furniture glides, silicone feet or wooden blocks. Above all, this is to protect your desk, because the screw heads will look out of the bottom of the plate and leave ugly marks and scratches on the surface. Due to this appropriate increase, this damage can not arise. With rubber and silicone feet, you have a non-slip protection right away.

Now your plant press is already finished.


Of course you can decorate your press too:

  • A router can round off the corners and edges.
  • Paint, paint and brush can be used to apply pictures or patterns.
  • Pyrography is also a way of the flower press, your personal stamp on "burn".

Fill plant press

Set the top plate aside.

Step 1: The screws are inserted from below into the lower wooden plate.

To fix the screws, you can now screw on a nut. This protects the screw from slipping out, but you must now always put at least as much material in the plant press for pressing as the nut is high. This is worthwhile for users who always want to process a lot of material at once and want to work quickly. This fixation is really not necessary and without it, there is no need to pay attention to a minimum amount of pressing material.

Step 2: Place a cardboard, paper, sandwich paper, baking paper or kitchen paper on the board to protect the wood.

Step 3: Now you can pack everything that you want pressed.
Leaves, flowers, grasses or ....

Tip: After each layer comes again a separation layer. Corrugated cardboard has proven to be particularly practical for this, but is very thick. The packaging of frozen pizza and cereal can also be used very well for this purpose. They are a waste product anyway and can also be used multiple times.

Step 4: Thread the upper board onto the screws, put on the washers and screw it on with the nuts.

The nuts create pressure and the press starts to work.

Hand tighten the nuts evenly around the edges to prevent them from tilting. Check again and again that nothing has slipped under the board. Finally, tighten the nuts, each diagonally, firmly.

Step 5: After pressing and drying time the flower press is opened again.

To open the flower press, simply unscrew the nuts, remove the washers and board. Now carefully remove paper layers and look forward to the great pressed results.


The longer the plant press stands, the flatter the and also dry at the same time. We were very happy with our result after 3 days.

Just have a look from time to time to see if the result is sufficient for you, otherwise just keep pressing.

If the flower press is heavily filled, you can check the nuts every now and then to see if they are still firm and if necessary tighten them a little.

Flower press and other possibilities

This press is versatile:

  • You can feed your own herbarium just as well
  • Prepare raw material for crafting lessons
  • If you do not have a vise, you can also clamp smaller gluing work here and let it dry under pressure.
  • But you can also use the press as a book press and do minor bookbinding tasks with it. A small and very simple perfect binding can be realized with this press.

Here you will find out what else you should consider when leaf pressing and how to get the colorful autumn colors: press leaves

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