Has spring sprung where you live? It's still winter in my neck of the woods, and I'm jonsing to get dirt under my fingernails and be back in my garden. Yes, flipping through seed catalogs helps, but nothing is better than actually doing something. So, I've been making DIY seed pots and upcycling found objects to make cheap (or, better yet, free) containers for my seedings to grow in.
I have two categories for my seed pots this year: upcycled from repurposed objects I have laying around and those that I make from recycled objects.
10 Upcycled/Repurposed Seed Pots:
1. Chipped China or ceramic cups and mugs. Have a favorite mug that is no longer useful for your morning coffee? That crack may actually be beneficial drainage for a seedling.
2. Broken clay pots. There's no rule that says a seed pot has to be beautiful. So, reuse partially broken clay pots.
3. Shells found at the beach. Grab your dog and go beach combing to find a truly unique gift from the sea.
4. Ice cube trays. Again, don't let a few cracks stop you.
5. Stained kitchen cookware. Have a stained pot that isn't right for your favorite bisque? Re-purpose!
6. Broken tea pot. How lovely will your tender green seedlings look popping out of a dainty (but chipped) teapot?
7. Stained or dented cake pan. A bundt pan that is dented in all the wrong places can find new life.
8. Muffin tins. Stained and dented? No worries!
9. Kiddie wading pool. Yes, it's large, but if you have the space this can be a transitional garden. It's especially useful for an early spring outdoor garden that may need to be covered due to the threat of frost.
10. Old wooden drawers. No, they'll never hold your fine linens after being filled with potting soil, but they can serve a new purpose.
15 recycled seed pots:
1. TP or paper towel roll. Check out this tutorial to learn how to turn paper tubes into seed pots.
2. Newspaper. Have a flare for origami? You'll like this beginner friendly tutorial.
3. Egg shells. Have half an egg shell? Rinse it out and get growing.
4. Egg carton. Did the egg shells already go in the compost bin? Use the carton.
5. Produce containers. Mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, salad greens, and blueberries (to name only a few) often come in plastic containers. Ease your eco-guilt by re-purposing them.
6. Milk cartons. Cut off the bottoms and you have a perfect seed pot.
7. Yogurt cups. These are the perfect size and shape.
8. Paper cups. Don't toss that coffee cup in the trash. Take it home, rinse it out and it's your new seed pot.
9. To-go containers. Would it really be so bad if your kale seedlings had a hint of last night's Pad Thai? (Just kidding, there won't be a residual food taste. Wash them thoroughly.)
10. Shredded paper. Making pulp paper pots is a fun project for a rainy day with the kiddos. Check out this tutorial.
11. Avocado peel. You've scooped out the gorgeous green contents for guac; now, reuse the peel.
12. Hollowed out citrus peel. If you can use an avocado peel, you can use citrus peels.
13. K cups. Have eco-guilt from these environmentally unfriendly cups? Peel off the top, cut out the inside filter and plant.
14. Plastic drink bottles. You forgot your canteen for the picnic and had to buy a plastic water bottle. Don't toss it in the recycling--reuse it as a seed pot.
15. Flat bottom ice cream cone. True confession: I have never tried this due to the fact that I don't eat a lot of ice cream cones. Never the less, I'm intrigued by the idea of a garden beginning in ice cream cones.
For all of these options make sure that you drill drainage holes.
Notice anything missing? Those plastic seedling trays that the seedlings you buy at the nursery are planted in? Don't reuse them. Often these can carry diseases such as tomato blight so don't reuse them for seedling pots.