Spring has arrived meaning it’s officially garden season! If you live somewhere similar to where we do, then it’s still a bit too cold to plant most of your outdoor garden, so we’re sharing our favorite way to get those seeds planted indoors. It’s important to give your plants plenty of time to grow healthy roots before being planted outside, to ensure they have a long and healthy life in your garden, even through inclimate weather.
While most of us don’t have much free space for an indoor garden, these Eggshell Starters are a perfect small, organic, and eco-friendly way to begin. Eggshells not only act as the perfect pocket to start your seeds but also provide a ton of nutrients to your plants and future garden, without the waste and harmful chemicals.
Benefits to using eggshells in your garden
1. Eggshells can be used as fertilizer: The shells are high in calcium carbonate which helps to strengthen the plant’s cell wall. They also contain other minerals (such as potassium and magnesium) that help plants grow.
2. Eggshells help lower the soil’s acidity level: Many plants prefer a lower acidity level in their soil to ward off toxic elements. The calcium carbonate in the shells makes the soil more alkaline than acidic.
3. Eggshells control pests: Using crushed eggshells in your garden bed can help deter pests such as slugs and snails, as the sharp edges are hazardous to their soft bodies.
How to make eggshell starters for your garden
Organic Eggs (as many as you need)
Cardboard Egg Carton
Begin by cracking your eggs (plan to use the eggs for baking or a big breakfast so there’s no waste) and placing them in a bowl. Try to crack the shells in half so you have two shells to use for starters. Once all of your eggs are cracked, gently rinse them in warm water.
Next, fill each egg ½-¾ full of soil, then sow your seeds, and top with more soil. Use the egg carton to store the newly planted eggshell starters. Water with a spray bottle (about 5-6 sprays should do it) and place in a windowsill.
Water each morning and watch as your plants begin to grow!
How to plant eggshell starters in your outdoor garden
Once your seedlings have grown their second set of leaves (approximately 3 weeks after they have been planted and each plant has 3-4 leaves) they are ready for planting outdoors. Using a garden spade, dig your hole an appropriate depth for each plant. For example, tomatoes will need to be planted about 6” deep and left with their top leaves above the soil, with plenty of space around to grow. Remove your egg shell starter from the carton, gently crush the shell in your hands, and plant. Fill the space around with rich soil and watch as they grow!
While each plant is different and has its own specific needs, egg shells are a great way to begin their life in an organic way that eliminates waste and provides rich nutrients to the plants.