Wash out paper ice cream cups. Add planting soil and plant a few seeds in each cup. When seedlings are 4-5 inches tall, moisten soil and carefully press out the root ball to transplant in an outdoor garden or tub.
Next time you eat a Popsicle, don't throw away the stick. You can use it in your windowsill or outdoor garden. Popsicle sticks can be used to mark seed variety, date planted, etc. They also make handy "stakes" to mark outdoor garden rows. Place the empty seed packet in a plastic bag so it won't get soggy. Staple the packet and bag to the stick.
Then you must have some empty milk containers around. Rinse the empty containers out. Cut one side from a quart or half-gallon container. Fill with seed starting mix. Use the removed side as dividers. When the seedling are tall enough to transplant outdoors, simply slit the sides of the cartons and slide or scoop out the root cube gently to avoid disturbing tender roots.
Plastic milk cartons can be used too! Carefully cut a milk jug so you have a 2-inch bottom that you can use as a plant saucer to keep water from staining windowsills or table tops, or you can use it as a basic seed starter dish.
Save the tops and caps The large tops can be used to protect tender seedlings from frost. Simply press the jugs into the ground. Remove them in the morning and replace at night until danger of frost is over.
By Randa Wagner
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