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Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Super easy newspaper pots for starting seeds

A super simple way to make pots for starting seeds is with a single strip of newspaper. I've seen all sorts of complex cutting, folding and taping instructions and even advertisements pitching a wooden tool to form the pots. Phooey! All you need is paper, scissors, a jar and your fingers.

Choose a jar that is the same diameter as your desired pot size. My jar held bouillon cubes. It is bigger than a standard spice rack jar, and smaller than a pint jar.

I cut a standard newspaper sheet (one side of the vertical fold) into three pieces lengthwise. Place the jar on the strip of paper so about two inches of width extends beyond the jar's opening. Start at one short end of the strip and wrap the paper around the jar as you roll it.

Push the two-inch edges of the paper back into the jar all around. Take the pot off the jar, and using your fingertips scrunch the newspaper down from the inside to form the bottom. You're done!

For a single strip of newspaper they are surprisingly strong. They do dry out quickly, however, so be sure to keep them in a watertight tray. Packing them tightly will help them keep their shape as well as promote even moisture. I also recommend moistening your seed-starting medium before putting it in the pots.

You can plant the entire pot into your garden. I like to pull off the bottom to free roots as I transplant. Be sure to bury completely when planting, as paper still sticking out on top can draw away moisture.


daisy gurl said...

I've made these and they work great! I hope you'll come share your gardening tip on this week's Maple Hill Hop! Happy spring!

David said...

Jennifer, I've seen this before but have never tried it. Your method seems to be very simple and easy. My question is always when it's time to put them out in the garden and the paper is soggy from the moisture of the soil when growing the plants, how does one get them out of the tray they are in and into the ground without them falling apart? I'll be starting the warm weather plants soon. April 1st is the day to start tomatoes, green peppers, cucumbers, and maybe some green beans. The weather is so nice it's hard not to try to plant something on the odd chance that it will make it through to safe temperatures.

Have a great easy newspaper pot day.

Jennifer said...

Hi, Dave. I haven't had newspaper pots fall apart on me at transplant time. I think the seedling's root structure aids the stability, and the newspaper becomes like a wrapper around the root ball. If you try these, pick them up from the tray like you would a soda can and I think you'll be ok. Happy thermometer dodging!

khair said...

I've made this and the result is amazing I hope you do not get tired to share gardening knowledge. thank you