Country Living & Penny Pinching

Getting back to "Little House on the Prairie" living

Tag: egg shells

Starting Eden Part 1

After spending a whole week worth of studying at night and a solid day taking notes I came up with all the information needed to plant my seeds. When, where, how far apart, pH level, days to maturity, and any helpful hints other bloggers have posted about. The Hubby’s new school notebook is now filled with everything seedlings related. He was super thrilled, not, but he will reap the benefits of fruits and veggies so it was ok.

all plotted out

all plotted out

Now is the time the Littles have been looking forward to, playing with dirt and tweezers in the house. Just a heads up we do not have a special light, trays or pots. We salvaged tuna cans, egg shells, orange peels, and egg cartons.  Pretty much anything we thought could hold a seed as it grew. The only thing we bought was seed starter.

2015.2.18 4 seed starting

top to bottom: just egg carton, half an egg shell, crushed egg shell

2015.2.18 2 seed starting

tuna cans and oranges

Here we are packing dirt, using tweezers for the tiny seeds and planting. The seeds chosen for inside were lettuce, tomato, red pepper, bell pepper, cucumber, and spinach. This has been their favorite part so far, getting dirty inside.

2015.2.18 6 seed starting

this is a plastic table cloth not a fancy lace one

It took a couple of weeks! Ok, maybe a week or so for the seedlings to sprout. I am so excited that the seeds grew but I am more afraid of keeping them alive. Everyday I have been moving them twice a day (for sun exposure)…EVERYDAY! Did I already say everyday? Well it was everyday. Moving them around was getting old and next year I will come up with a better way to do this. Time will tell what happens to the seedlings and by the way, the bell peppers have not sprouted at all!

all bagged up ready to grow

all bagged up ready to grow

How have you started seeds inside? How did you get them enough light?

Tune in to see if I can handle keeping seedlings alive indoors.

 

Ways to Start Seedlings

2015.2.18 5 seed startingStarting seeds inside is not as easy as everyone makes it sound. Unless you have a designated spot and tray and lamp and an easy method for watering. Most beginners do not have any of these…just like me!

So after pinterest-ing and pinterest-ing I finally came up with a few homemade ideas for starting our seeds. Now don’t get me wrong, I am all for going and getting the pre-made seed starters, especially if you have the money and do not want to store the materials for months leading up to it. We were not in a position to go out and buy those items and a sun light for growth.

2015.2.18 4 seed starting

So we went with orange peels, tuna cans, egg shells, crushed egg shells and an egg carton. This is where we started the experiment and started taking notes so we would know what to NOT do next year. My theory was that “If I used different containers, then the oranges will do the best.” My rational for this was because oranges are biodegradable and would become food for the plants…or so I thought.
2015.2.18 2 seed starting

The experiment went as follows, all of the factors were the same, the only thing different was the containers. I watered them all from the top and kept them all together. Eventually the tomatoes came up, a few lettuce, none of the bell peppers (bad batch of seeds), a spinach, and no peas (next time I will soak them first).  We also used a heating pad under them during the night because our house has awful windows and it’s practically like we are sleeping outside. The make shift green house was made out of tape and Ziploc for the two on the left, and Saran wrap for the box on the right.

all bagged up ready to grow

all bagged up ready to grow

Conclusion, the orange peels grew moldy and rotten within days (this became a well duh moment for me after I realized I watered them and then wrapped them up with heat), the tuna cans should have had a hole in the bottom for water to drain, there was no real difference between crushed egg shells and just the carton. For the half an egg-shell I felt there should have also been a hole in it to drain water and after a couple of days of growth it seemed way to small.

Next year I will not try any of these methods again. I will attempt the toilet paper rolls and newspaper cups. Hey, I have the rest of my life to figure out which method works best for me.  Also another note about the egg carton…it turned to mush every time I watered and it would steal all the water from the soil. I’m assuming the same will happen with the toilet paper rolls and newspaper so I will be using thick rolls and doubling up on newspaper.

What has been your favorite way to start seeds indoors?