Growing your own vegetables is not just about having fresh produce all summer. These days, it’s also about saving money any way you can. So, if you could use what’s on hand—and, um, free—why on earth would you venture out to your local nursery and spend gobs of money on starter pots?
This year, I am rehashing an old primary school science project and starting my tomatoes in eggshells. My hope is that the eggshells will provide the young plants with much-needed nutrients and serve as a deterrent against slugs and other pests once the plants are transplanted and they begin to mature.
If you’d like to try this little “eggs-periment” at home or with your kids, it’s really quite easy.
- eggshells and carton
- seed starter mix
- needle or small nail
- Gather eggshells that are cracked fairly evenly around and more than halfway up. Rinse them thoroughly to eliminate any potential odors.
- Using a pin, needle or small nail, poke a hole in the bottom of the shell for drainage. It’s easier if you just place them in the egg carton to do this.
- Fill the empty shells with your starter mix and soak thoroughly, checking to see the eggshell drains properly.
- Plant seeds according to directions on packet.
- Set in a sunny window and cover with plastic to help keep the soil moist and warm for germination.
- Once the plants emerge and the danger of frost has passed, harden off the seedlings and then plant, placing the entire shell into each planting hole.
- Wait and see what hatches!