Use applesauce cups to start seedlings

April 16 | Guest post by Birdlady
Eat me, then seed me!

After reading about ways to start seeds indoors, I would like to offer this suggestion:

Start seedlings in freshly-washed and lightly-bleached applesauce cups. Simply punch some holes in the bottom for drainage. They do not use much soil and can be reused.

I have started many plants using the above method. Of course you have to remove the plant before planting it into ground, but the applesauce cups will allow you to squeeze the bottom to bring the plant up to the point where you can grab it.

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    • Using a 1:10 dilution of bleach in water is always a good idea for starting seeds since the containers might have mold spores on then which can grow, contaminate your seedlings, and then cause "damping off." (Bye bye hard work)

      I also do the same thing for the pots for my houseplants. It also kills and plant diseases. Vinegar would probably also work at a 1:5 dilution and would help remove those scaly white mineral deposits.

      2 agree
  1. I'm also saving yogurt cups, sour cream, cottage cheese etc! So many possibilities in your fridge

    5 agree
  2. If you're not big on applesauce, try yogurt. I use in a similar method (but I clean with vinegar) and then put a mason jar on the top to give it a greenhouse effect.

    3 agree
    • Oh, good idea with the mason jars.

      I got some clear plastic shoe boxes at the Home Depot last year, and I put my seedlings inside it under my grow light. Makes for a great greenhouse.

  3. I actually use red solo cups for my tomatoes since they allow for more root growth. It saves you the trouble of repotting your seedlings. I reuse them from year to year after cleaning them with bleach. I start herbs in smaller containers like the applesauce ones.

    I like using food containers to start seedlings rather than other plastic or toilet paper tubes because they were rated for food storage.

    1 agrees
  4. I read in one of my gardening magazines to use the kcups from the coffee machine. They already have the hole punched in the bottom just peel off the foil and you can compost the coffee grounds.

    2 agree
  5. I actually like to use cardboard egg cartons to start seeds in. It's recyclable, compostable, and just the perfect size to sit in a sunny windowsill. I cut the lid separate from the bottom, and use it as a tray to catch stray water/dirt.

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