Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Re-purposed Yogurt Containers as Vegetable Seedling Pots

I like to be green and reuse whatever I can. It drives my dear husband batty but I feel like I'm making a difference in my little corner of the world. On the plus side, I'm saving money in a tough economy.

I have found that the garden is a perfect place to reuse some of the plastic food containers that seem to pile up from week to week.

Here is an easy project if you'd like to try making your own seedling pots. I'm using single serving yogurt containers because they seem to be a good size(6 oz) for starting my vegetables. [If you recall I used the little 4 oz baby food tubs for my flower seedlings. The method and tools are the same.]

What you'll need:

Clean Plastic Food Containers
Scratch Awl (about $6 at a Hardware store, I picked mine up at Home Depot)

Step One: Take a clean container and flip it over so you can see the bottom. Take your awl and push four holes evenly around the outside rim on the bottom of the container(below) The plastic on the yogurt container is soft enough on the edges to easily push through at an angle.

Step Two: Push a hole through the center of the bottom.(below) The plastic is much thicker in this part of the container. You'll want to make sure the container is flat on a stable surface when you do this as you will need to use gentle, steady force to pierce it.

Step Three: Pierce holes around the outside bottom sides of the container. In the photos below you can see the side holes from the inside and outside. I try to stagger my holes so that the water won't pool in the pot. While the seeds need to be kept moist, the roots will rot if kept too wet.

I also like to water my seedlings through the holes in the bottom of the pot. On these seedling pots, I will use re-purposed Motts apple sauce containers (below) to hold the water and probably as the 'greenhouse' on top until the seeds sprout. You could also just use any type of cling wrap over the top to keep the warmth and moisture in.

Why you should do this craft on a solid sturdy surface. I tried to put a hole in the bottom while sitting on the couch and the awl slipped. Yes, it hurt but I knew better!

The other nice thing about this project is you can save the pots and reuse them from year to year. Happy Gardening!

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