There are many ways to recycle and reuse items for seed starting. Low maintenance trays, cardboard boxes and toilet paper rolls are different tools to try instead of plastic trays. I do use trays, egg cartons and all kinds of seed starting containers to save money.
Low maintenance solutions keep costs low and help with recycling. Here are a few ways that I start garden seeds without spending a lot of money.
Low Maintenance Seed Starting Station
Building a greenhouse is not feasible for everyone. In addition to that, where I live it stays cold until April, so using a greenhouse for seeds doesn’t work. Creating a low maintenance seed starting station in a kitchen or extra space is easy. All you need is the right set up. Grow lights, extension cord, timer, trays, containers to hold the trays, seeds, water and a shelving unit.
First, start looking for this list of supplies at garage sales this summer. Most of the list can be obtained very cheap. Thrift stores have some really good deals on shelving, old bookcases, desks and more. As far as trays go, those should be pretty easy to find at garage sales or online. Be sure to keep an eye out on sales. Impulse buying is not your friend. Research and waiting on the right time is beneficial when it comes to low maintenance see starting.
Seed Starting Trays
Over the years, I have bought several seed starting trays. My initial investment of 5 to 7 dollars each year has allowed me to accumulate up to 10 trays so far. Each year I add to what I have, and save what I bought from the previous years’.
Using this system helps me to keep my costs down. In addition to this, it helps me to teach my children how to take care of something to get a longer use out of it.
DIY Potting Soil
Creating your own potting soil is easy. I use homemade low maintenance compost from our bin, top soil and peat moss. My recipe is to mix them up in thirds. One third top soil, one third compost, one third peat moss. Potting soil is important, and keeping a mixture that is moist, not clumpy, but drains well is important. I like to use my own compost from our compost bin.
For years I bought my own potting soil and then realized that I can make it just as well then I am assured that there are no chemicals or anything unnatural in the potting soil. Low maintenance suburban homesteads use up what they have to avoid overhead, and potting soil was something on my list that is cheaper to make at home.
Low Maintenance Seed Preservation
Seed preserving is another way to save and is a low maintenance project. I save seeds from our grocery store vegetables throughout the year to keep a backup and variety. Each year at the end of summer as we harvest our produce, I pick 3- 5 of the best vegetables that I want to save from the previous year. It is an easy and affordable way to have a seed collection without buying any. For different varieties of seeds I check out what stores have at the end of their season. That is when most are marked down to sell.
Seed starting is an activity for people who love to grow vegetables, herbs or flowers that is self sustaining, not expensive.
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