How to Make a Mini Greenhouse from a Soda Bottle
Clear plastic beverage bottles can be repurposed to create a controlled environment for seedlings and root cuttings. This is a page about how to make a mini greenhouse from a soda bottle.
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You can make mini greenhouses from 2 liter soda bottles. They are simple and dirt cheap. It is a very effective little greenhouse for rooting cuttings.
Total Time: 10 minutes
Yield: 1 mini greenhouse
- 2 two liter (or larger) soda bottles with labels intact, thoroughly rinsed and tightly recapped.
- Phillips head screwdriver, or other similar, pointed object.
- 1 16 in. (or longer) x about 1 in. wide strip of tape; masking, cello, duct or other (I showed a roll of duct tape from which I planned to tear a 16 x 1 in. strip. Then I remembered I had some 1 in. masking tape.)
- small, sharp knife
- pair small utility scissors
- Lay first bottle on a flat, stable surface, making sure it is full of air and tightly sealed. It should feel rigid. Firmly grasp the neck and cap with one hand. With the other hand using the knife, make a 2 in. cut along the top of the label. This will serve as a starting place for your scissors. You could continue all around the label with the knife, but I find you have more control with scissors.
- Insert scissors into the knife cut, and following the label top as your guide, cut all around the bottle and remove the top.
- Align strip of tape along top of label on second bottle. You may have to leave a space between the label and the tape. This would depend on just where the bottler positioned the label. What you will be aiming for is the top of your tape to extend about a quarter inch into the curve of the bottle neck.
- Proceed with knife and scissors along the top of the tape and remove the bottle top as you did with the first bottle. Then remove bottle label and tape. Now, you have both top and bottom of your mini greenhouse.
- One at a time, hold each bottle firmly in one hand, and with the other, (from inside the bottle), gently force the screwdriver through each 'leg' of the bottle bottom.
- After making a drain hole in each leg of both bottles, check the fit of the two bottles. The upper half of the mini greenhouse with its slight curve at its opening should fit nicely about a half inch into the bottom half.
- Your mini greenhouse is now ready for filling the bottom half with a rich, loose medium to be used for rooting cuttings. It can also be used as a hospital for sickly plants. Most plants benefit from the high moisture inside the dome. Some plants such as African Violets and other gesneriads will benefit from all condensation being kept wiped from inside the dome.
- Rarely do I keep the bottom half at its original height. For most plants to be rooted, I shorten the bottom half to about one half its height.
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