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10 Seed Starting Pots Made from Recycled Materials

10 Seed Starting Pots Made from Recycled Materials

Those of us in the northern hemisphere who are fairly green-thumbed and happiest when digging in the dirt have probably begun to plan this year’s garden by now: sketches have been made, seeds have likely already been ordered, and although the soil will still be too cold to plant in directly for another 8 weeks or so, we can get a head start on our veggies and herbs by starting our seeds indoors. There’s no need to go overboard and spend a fortune on fancy starter kits or designer seed starting pots; all that’s needed is some potting soil, seeds, and whatever you may have lying around the house.

1. Folded Newspapers

Newspaper Seed Pots

    This is one of the most eco-friendly started pots imaginable: newspapers can be found pretty much everywhere, and a few simple folds are all that’s needed to create perfect little pockets for nurturing your seeds. Once folded, fill the pots with soil, pop in your seed(s), water, and place in a sunny spot.

    2. Cardboard Egg Cartons

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    Egg carton planter

      One of the most common ways to grow seedlings is to use a cardboard egg container. Just fill each individual egg cup with soil, drop a seed or two into each section, and water. You just have to make sure to keep these well-watered, as the cardboard tends to suck up a great deal of moisture over the course of the day, and dry soil = dried-out seedlings.

      3. Egg Shells

      Egg shell planters

        After you’ve cracked an egg or two open for your favourite omelette, don’t compost or throw them out immediately! If you’ve broken them in such a way that the shells are mostly intact (like, if you’ve just peeled the tops off for a soft-cooked egg breakfast), just wash them gently with soap and water and let them dry. Fill them with soil, pop a couple of seeds into each one, tuck them back into their carton(s), and water them well. You won’t have to remove the shells to transplant the seedlings; just crack the bottoms open for the roots to grow out from the bottoms.

        4. Jars

        Empty baby food jars are ideal for this purpose, but any clean glass jar will do. Once you’ve used all of the contents, wash the jar thoroughly with dish soap and water, and be sure to rinse it well. Let it dry completely. Pour a bit of gravel or some small pebbles into the bottom, and then fill with potting soil.

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        5. Mini Yoghurt Cups

        Those individual yoghurt containers aren’t just perfect little snacks when you’re on the go: they’re ideal for growing individual plants that need a bit of extra root-room. Use them to start sunflower seeds and beans, or herbs such as mint, cilantro, or parsley. If you plan to grow plants in them and not transplant them (like in a miniature windowsill herb garden), then poke holes in the bottoms for drainage and add a few pebbles before you pour in the soil.

        6. Pastry Containers

        Pastry box

          You know those plastic take-out containers with the little pop-slots? Pastries such as croissants, danishes, and such usually come in them, and they just end up being disposed of as soon as the last crumbs have been licked from the bottoms. These containers are perfect miniature greenhouses: fill the bottom portion with soil, plant your seeds, and then just pop the top closed in between waterings: it’ll create a warm, safe, humid environment for your little seeds to flourish.

          7. Paper Cups

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          Paper cup planter

            Unless you’re dragging a reusable cup with you every time you go to a cafe, chances are that each take-out coffee you purchase is served in a paper cup. I like to hope that you’ve been recycling these, but aside from turning them into mulch, you can also use them as planters. Larger cups are great for growing herbs on a windowsill, while smaller ones (like espresso cups) are better for things like tomato seedlings that you’ll be transplanting once the weather warms up. (These are ideal for kids to plant beans in: they sprout so quickly that the kids remain interested, and they can eat the green beans when they grow!)

            8. Cardboard Toilet Paper Rolls
            Toilet roll seed starters

              This one might sound a bit weird, but it actually works: take a toilet paper roll and make a few long vertical cuts into one end, then fold them inwards to create a cup. Fill that with soil, add seeds, water, and you’ll have plants in no time.

              9. Juice Cartons

              Slice the spout tops off, fill with soil and a few seeds, add water and sunlight, and poof! Seedlings. This one is best for those that grow quickly, but will need to be transplanted once they’re about 6 inches tall, like beans, tomatoes, and peppers.

              10. Cans

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              Can seedling

                Strong and sturdy, empty cans are ideal for starting all kinds of seeds. Empty tomato paste cans are great for individual ones, while larger cans like 28oz soup cans are great for mixed lettuces and such. If you want to be cheeky, you can use empty bean cans to grow your bean seedlings, tomato cans for tomato plants, etc.

                Try to use heirloom, organic seeds whenever possible, and never spray toxic chemicals into your garden! If you feel the need to fertilize your plants, use organic compost, ground eggshells, or “compost tea”. Save your seeds when they’re ready to be harvested, and you’ll be able to grow your own food for years to come.

                Reference Guide

                growing with plants

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                  Catherine Winter

                  Catherine is a wordsmith covering lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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                  Last Updated on July 18, 2019

                  10 Small Changes To Make Your House Feel Like A Home

                  10 Small Changes To Make Your House Feel Like A Home

                  Your house is more than just a building that you live in. It should be a home that makes you feel welcome as soon as you open the front door.

                  Making your house feel like a home is not something that simply happens on its own. You need to make some changes to a house when you move in, to give it that cozy, warm feeling that turns it into a true home. To help you speed the process, follow this guide to 10 small changes to make your house feel like a home.

                  1. Make the Windows Your Own

                  When you move into a home, they often come with boring Venetian blinds or less than attractive curtains.

                  One of the best ways you can instantly warm your home and make it showcase your style is to add some new window dressing. Adding beautiful curtains not only improves your home’s appearance, but it can also help to control the temperature.

                  2. Put up Some Art

                  If you have a lot of bare walls in your home, it will seem sterile no matter how beautiful your paint or wallpaper is.

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                  Hanging art on the walls will instantly give it personality and make it feel like home.

                  3. Improve the Aroma

                  A house that is not filled with inviting smells will never feel like a home. There are loads of ways you can make your home smell nice. There are tons of air fresheners on the market you can use.

                  Incense and scented candles are a nice option as well. Don’t forget that baking in a home is also a great way to fill it with an aroma that instantly smells like home as soon as you open the front door.

                  4. Put out Lots of Pillows and Throws

                  A great way to make your home look warm and inviting is to place lots of pillows and throws out on the furniture. It is much better to have too many pillows than not enough.

                  There is nothing like the feeling of sinking into a cushiony pillow that feels like a cloud to make you feel like you are at home.

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                  5. Instantly Class up Your Closet

                  If your closet is filled with wire or plastic hangers, it will never truly feel homey. To instantly make your closet feel classy, change out your old hangers for wooden ones.

                  Not only do they look great, but they are better for hanging your clothes as well.

                  6. Improve Your Air Quality

                  One of the most overlooked ways to make your house feel more like a home is to improve its air quality.

                  The easiest and best way to upgrade the air quality in your home is to change the old, dirty filters in your furnace regularly. Get some air filters delivered to your home so that you always have some on hand.

                  7. Fill it with Plants

                  Another way to improve the air quality in your home is to fill it with plants. You should have plants in every room of your home.

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                  They help to improve the air quality and they look beautiful. As well as making your home appear homier, plants also help to boost your mood and lower your stress levels.

                  8. Change the Doorknobs

                  Most people don’t really give their doorknobs a second thought unless they are broken. That is a shame because changing your doorknobs is an easy way to add personality to your home.

                  Changing your old, boring doorknobs to new ones that are works of art will instantly brighten your home.

                  9. Upgrade Your Tub or Shower

                  There is nothing like luxuriating in a whirlpool bath or steam shower to make the cares of the day melt away. Your family deserves a bit of luxury when they are in their bathroom.

                  Install a new shower or tub today to make your bathroom worthy of a place in your home.

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                  10. Fresh Cut Flowers

                  You can make any room in your house feel homier by placing a vase full of beautiful flowers in it. The gorgeous look and intoxicating aroma of fresh cut flowers will immediately brighten your day when you encounter them.

                  You don’t have to make all these changes at once. Try one or two a day though, and your house will feel like a home before you know it. The trick is to constantly keep adding these homey touches to make your home a place worthy of its name.

                  Featured photo credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/black-wooden-round-analog-wall-clock-on-brown-wooden-wall-121537/ via unsplash.com

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