How to use eggshells for seedlings

Ready to start planting? It's that time of year where gardens are in full swing and many of us are trying to come up with ways to cut the costs for getting the seedlings planted and ready to grow. There are actually a number of household items that can be re-purposed for seedlings, but many gardeners rely on the trusted method of using eggshells. 
Eggshells as seedling starters can seem like a lot of work at the start, but it offers many benefits other planters simply do not. In this article we will examine what makes eggshells one of the best options for starting your plants and how you can complete the project yourself. 
One of the best things about eggshells is that they are a cheap option for planting. 17 Apart indicates that you can reuse the shells after you have cracked open the egg for a delicious meal. The only thing you have to be careful about is preserving the shape of the egg. Rather than cracking the egg down the center, crack it near the top to conserve most of the eggshell.
The eggs should be cleaned well, and you should poke a drainage hole in the bottom. A little more time consuming, but you will have the perfect size and shape for planting your seeds. 
You can plant directly in the ground 
One of the best things about eggshells is that they are completely safe to be planted into the ground once the sprouts are ready. According to the instructions described in 17 Apart, the process is very simple. When the plants are ready for their new home in the ground, place the entire egg in and pack a bit of dirt around to hold it in place. You can gently crack the shells before planting. You don't have to worry about possibly damaging the roots by removing it from the planter or be concerned that the eggshell will have negative impacts on the soil. 
Promotes healthy growing 
Eggshells can actually help plants grow better. According to SF Gate, once the eggshell breaks down in the soil it can work as a barrier to protect plants from slugs and other insects who may be interested in eating the young sprouts. Additionally, the calcium and other minerals found in eggs can nourish the plants and promote healthy growing. 17 Apart noted that their sprouts came up much quicker in eggshells than compared to using plastic containers as starters.
Other options for seedlings
1. Cardboard egg carton 
According to an article posted on Instructables, egg cartons make for a convenient and cool option for starting your seeds. Start by cutting the carton in half and then place the soil inside and plant your seeds. However, one thing to be aware of is that this makes for a small planting and is best used for herbs rather than bigger plants. The carton will need to be cut apart prior to planting to ensure that each sprout has ample room to grow.
2. Toilet paper roll
Because nearly everybody has toilet paper rolls around their house, it will be easy for many people to get the materials to make this easy planter. According to Tree Hugger, there are two methods you can try with toilet paper rolls. Option one is to leave the bottom of the roll open and allow the dirt to seal it off. Option two is to fold in the bottom so that soil and water are held together firmly. Be sure to open up the bottom again before planting. 
3. Newspaper
Needing a project for the newspapers you have collected? A DIY seedling pot may be just the answer for you! According to a blog from Prairie Homestead, all you need is some old newspaper, a cup, tape and potting soil. Put the newspaper around the cup to start the shape of the pot. Tape around the edges and pull the cup away from the paper. Finish off taping the bottom and you are finished! Add in the soil and allow your seedling to grow. When they are ready to be planted in the ground you can either plant the paper directly in the ground or cut the bottom to expose the roots.
What DIY method do you use to plant your seedlings? Share with your friends to see what they do. 

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