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Recycling in the garden – novel ideas for planting

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Author: Louise Williams, Posted: Thursday, 23rd May 2019, 09:00

Photo: Grillo Designs Photo: Grillo Designs

As soon as Spring started here, as we do every year, we began planting seeds. We tend to plant vegetables, herbs and salad, which really helps us to cut down on the plastic packaging we are usually inundated with from the supermarket.

Currently we have lettuce, chives and tomatoes starting, with cucumber and rocket waiting to go in, as the cold snap was a little harsh. Recently, instead of buying new plastic pots, we have been looking at ways we can re-use the things we already have to plant in.

Lots of plastic tubs have drainage holes

Lots of the plastic tubs that food comes in – grapes and tomatoes for example – are perfect, as they already have holes in them for draining. Any plastic containers that don’t are easily converted by using a skewer to carefully poke some holes in the bottom. This is one for the adults to do if you are planting with kids!

You can also cut one panel out of plastic milk bottles and lie them on their sides. Egg boxes are brilliant as you can have individual seedlings in each section and they can be planted directly into the soil – just make sure you are using the paper variety.

Another idea is to use the inner core of toilet rolls. Stack them tightly in a tray, fill with compost and plant individual seeds in them. When they are ready to be transferred you can plant them straight into the soil.

Plant into egg shells

If you have egg boxes, chances are that you also have egg shells. You can plant into these too, just make a small drainage hole in the bottom. A particularly fun one for children is to let them draw a face on the shell in non-toxic pens and then plant cress in them for hair. Once done with, you can crush the shell up to add to the soil for extra drainage.

You can easily turn newspaper pages into pots, either using a stapler, or if you want to plant them out, you can secure them using a little flour and water paste glue.

Coffee grounds act as a brilliant fertiliser

For coffee lovers with machines that produce grounds, another brilliant idea is mixing the grounds into the compost, as they are full of nitrates and act as a brilliant fertiliser.

And finally, what about all these bags that compost comes in? Well, if you open them carefully and then poke some holes in the bottom when they are empty, you can use them to grow potatoes.

Re-use then recycle

So not only are you not adding to your waste by not buying new plastic pots or your fruit and vegetables in containers, you are re-using any that you do have, and once they are done with, you can either put them away for next year or recycle them as usual.


For more from Louise, visit her blog here: Pink Pear Bear

Other Images

Photo: Chai Leng

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