How to Grow Seedlings in an Empty Egg Carton

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Don't throw away that empty egg carton!

We’ve been stuck indoors for a lot of the past year—but it’s given us the chance to try all kinds of new things. We’ve been experimenting with new recipes, craft projects and plenty of cooking and cleaning hacks. And a large majority of you probably also tried your hand at indoor gardening for the first time—I know my house did!

I think pursuing an indoor garden is an admirable thing. It’s practical, healthy and a wonderful step towards self-sufficiency. Even if you’ve struggled with keeping plants alive in the past, we’re here to help get you back into the swing of things. And all you need is an empty egg carton!

How to Set up Your Egg Carton

First, take your pulp paper egg carton and poke some small holes into the bottoms and sides for airflow and drainage. To start seedlings, you’ll want the correct potting mix made for seeds. It should be lighter than regular potting soil—those little plant stems have to push their way through! Whichever mix you decide to go with, make sure to moisten the soil with warm water. After that, place the soil into each pocket of the egg carton.

Planting Your Seedlings

Whether planting herbs, vegetables or a different kind of seed, you’ll want to plant based on the packet’s instructions. You’ll also want to make sure to place plastic wrap loosely over the carton after planting—this will help retain moisture in the soil.

It’s also important that the seeds be kept warm to help spur germination. Try to keep the carton in a warm place out of direct sunlight, or even on a heating pad. Then, once germination has begun, the plastic wrap can be removed.

Transplanting Them to a Larger Container

Your plants are now ready to receive all the bright lights (or even grow lights)! When you begin to see additional leaves on your plants’ stems, it’s about time to transfer your plants to a bigger pot.

Fill your containers with potting mix and soil and carefully transfer your new plants. Remember to water well! Once again, avoid direct sunlight while your plants get to know their new environment. After a while, you’ll begin to see all that wonderful, natural growth!

Congratulations—you’ve just successfully started a garden with an empty egg carton.

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Melany Love
Having always wanted a career in writing, Melany couldn't have found a better place than Taste of Home to begin. When she's not scribbling in her notebook or working at her computer, she can be found experimenting with new recipes or relaxing with a book and her cats.