Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Seed Starting Pots from Toilet Paper Rolls

I have a confession to make.   I’m a saver, a scavenger and to some extent, a hoarder.  I don’t mean to imply that if you opened my garage door you would find trash up to the rafters.  It’s more like I can’t seem to stop trying to find second uses for trash.   Not just my trash, but everyone’s trash.   It doesn’t really matter to me what it is as long as I’ve saved it from the landfill.  Nowhere is the saver in me more evident than in my home life.  I hate throwing anything out.  I know that the minute I send it to a recycling plant or (gasp) a landfill I will find a useful purpose for it.  With this type of thinking not much gets thrown out around here.   Today’s project will use all the empty toilet paper rolls I've been collecting to make seed starting pots.  I did a bit of research and practiced a few different methods before deciding I liked this method the best.  This instructions I followed for this project were from the website
Start by pressing on the roll to flatten it.  Push the creases together and press on the roll again to flatten it.  You will end up with 4 creases in your roll. 
 Your roll will now look slightly more square than round.  Make 4 small slits at the bottom of the roll about ½ inch long. 

 Bend each of the slits in towards the center of the roll and make a crease.  Fold these edges together like you were closing a box. 
 Place the rolls in a pan or other container.  A tub that was brought home after a hospital stay turned out to be the perfect height for the seedling pots.  Fill your seedling pots with soil and plant with your favorite seeds. 
Remember to tamp down the soil and add some water.  To keep the soil moist and warm I covered the tub with a piece of glass from an old frame, but plastic wrap would also work fine.
When the seedlings emerge, remove the cover to keep the plants from burning.  When you seedlings are ready to be planted dig a hole as deep as the seed starting pot.  Opening up the bottom of the pot will let the roots have room to grow. Your cardboard tube will eventually decompose and will become part of your soil.   
This project was quick, fun and a great reuse of toilet paper rolls.  It took just minutes to make about 20 seedling pots.  Paper towels or gift wrap rolls would also work well for this project, just cut them to the desired size. 
Thanks again to the author at and check out her site if you get a chance. 

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