March winds and April showers
can blow your plants away.
So start your seeds inside the house
and plant outside in May.
When we first started gardening, we were so excited to start from scratch with seeds grown indoors. Growing plants from seeds allow you to start gardening earlier in the season, and buying a packet of seeds is much cheaper than the cost of plants. We went to our local gardening store and purchased a wide variety of seed packets, brought them home, and began the process of starting our seeds. We planted them in suitable seed starter soil, watered them, and provided adequate sunlight. After a bit, the seeds formed little seedlings that peeked through the soil. It was all very rewarding. Once the seeds had outgrown their indoor homes, we were ready to transplant them outdoors. This is where we, as newbies, had a sad awakening. Although our seedlings were ready to be transplanted, the garden was not ready for the seedlings. It was not the appropriate planting time for the specific vegetables we had chosen. Fortunately, we were able to transplant the seedlings to larger indoor pots and enjoy the fruits of our labor indoors.
Now that we know to choose seeds that will form seedlings at the right time to be planted, we have enjoyed the process of starting seeds in eggshells. Eggshells have been a fun choice because they are easy to obtain, you can place the shell and seedling directly into the soil, and the eggshell provides a great source of calcium and other minerals for the plant.
If you’d like to try this at home, here are the steps to follow:
Choose your seeds. Look at the packets’ indoor starting time to help you choose the best seeds. Herbs and flowers are easy, great choices.
Save your cracked eggshells. Choose shells that are mostly intact, rinse them well, and line an empty carton with the shells.
Using a spoon, carefully add pre-moistened seed soil to the eggshells. Seed soil is a lighter soil that allows the root system to grow freely through the plant, creating a strong and healthy plant.
Add the seeds to the soil and slightly push down, just until the seeds are fully covered. We add two to three seeds per shell for optimum success rates and keep the strongest looking seedling.
Gently mist the soil with a spray bottle of water . Continue to keep the soil moist while the leaves are developing.
Place the carton in a sunny windowsill and watch the seeds sprout.
When your seedlings develop leaves, you can transplant them into a larger pot or directly in your garden. Before you transplant, gently crush the shell and remove a few shards around the bottom.
We’ve used this method for our outdoor garden, and also for starting flower seeds for our indoor house pots. It is such a rewarding feeling to know you were involved in the entire growth process from start to finish.