How to Build Palm Tree Props

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Building a palm tree prop is fairly simple, although it is time consuming. Allow ample time for the paint and glue to dry between steps. The cost of building palm tree props shouldn't be too much, but will ultimately depend on the cost of the fake palm leaves and your access to power tools. Palm tree props are perfect for a Polynesian-themed event or stage performance. They are also a fun addition to a tropical-themed room.

Things You'll Need

  • Plywood
  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Jigsaw
  • Brown paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Brown construction paper
  • Glue
  • Staple gun
  • Fake palm leaves
  • 5-inch latex balloons
  • Newspaper strips
  • Flour
  • Double-sided tape
  • Decide how tall you want your palm tree to be, and use this measurement to create the trunk of the tree. Draw the trunk onto a piece of plywood. The trunk should be wider on the bottom than the top, but make sure the top is wide enough to attach the palm leaves.

  • Cut the shape of the palm tree out of the wood with a jigsaw. Sand all cut edges.

  • Paint both sides of the tree trunk brown. Allow plenty of time for the paint to dry before moving to the next step.

  • Cut brown construction paper into strips that are approximately 4 inches wide and 6 inches long. Start at the bottom of the tree and attach the top 2 inches of the brown paper strips in a row across the bottom of the tree. Attach the paper with hot glue or a stapler. Add strips of paper in rows going up the tree until you reach the top of the trunk.

  • Start with the last row of paper strips you attached to the trunk, and use a pencil to curl the bottoms of each paper strip. Continue all the way down to the base of the trunk to give the palm tree a textured look.

  • Use a staple gun to attach fake palms (from a craft store) to the trunk. Staple the base of each palm branch to the back of the tree trunk at the top. As you attach the palms, arrange them so they don't all fall in the same direction.

  • Cover 5-inch, round latex balloons with newspaper strips dipped in paper mache paste (one part flour and two parts water). Let the paper mache sit over night to dry. Once dry, paint the balloons brown so they look like coconuts.

  • Use double-sided tape to stick the coconuts to the trunk of the palm tree right under the branches.

Tips & Warnings

  • To save time, have someone else make the coconuts as you work on the palm tree.
  • Give yourself at least two days to complete the palm tree without feeling rushed.

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