I stopped using peat moss discs for seed starting many years ago when I learned that the peat bogs were being decimated by this practice. Instead I save my eggshells throughout the year and fill them with my own homemade compost. Here's how:
- Take a sharp knife and quickly and carefully wack off the top most narrow part of the shell. Rinse and place back in an empty egg carton. Put the shell top in the compost.
- Poke a hole in the bottom with a pen and place a tiny piece of wet paper over the hole so the compost will not leak out.
- Fill with compost or potting soil tapping gently but not firmly to settle. Gently water all the filled shells and plant as per seed pack directions.
- Place under grow lights or a bright, south facing window till they germinate. If using the window idea, turn daily.
- Plant in pot or garden when they have at least their first set of true leaves. Crush the egg shell gently to help the roots spread out into the soil.
Tip: Some seeds may require bottom heat which can be accomplished with placing the carton on top of your refrigerator, water heater, or a heat mat. You can also make a little greenhouse out of a bakery plastic container, so you will not have to water very much.
By littlegamma from Southern, AL
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I never knew the bogs were being destroyed. Never again will I buy peat moss discs. Will use the egg shell hint. Thanks.
I think this is a wonderful idea. Make sure you really crush the bottom of the shell before planting. The roots should grow out the bottom. I can't wait until it's time to start my seedlings.
Thanks for the great idea.
I have used egg shells for seed starters and got stunted growth. The shells were just too tough, even when crushed, for the roots to expand through.
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