Toilet Paper Rolls and Vegetable Seeds...

Lately, I have been collecting toilet paper rolls.  Now I know that may sound a bit weird to some of you, but I needed them for my garden.

So how on earth can toilet paper rolls help you in the garden?

Well, they are an inexpensive, environmentally friendly tool in which to start seeds indoors.

From upper right - bush beans, marigolds, Kentucky beans, cucumbers, sugar snap peas and spinach.

I thought this would be a good project to do with the kids, so we gathered our seeds.

We cut each toilet paper roll in half (you can use paper towel rolls and cut them into thirds for this too.)

We used a planting mix that had slow-release fertilizer already included and also had water-holding granules.

I advise wetting the soil before adding it to your toilet paper rolls.

Now that we had everything, we were ready to start.
The kids used tablespoons to 'spoon' the planting mix into each tube.

Then we lightly pressed down the planting mix and added more.

Now it was time to plant.

Then we used a spray bottle filled with water to thoroughly water each planted seed.

Now we had to create a 'mini-greenhouse' effect by covering our toilet paper rolls with clear plastic wrap with some holes in the top.  Then we placed them on top of the refrigerator, where it was warm enough to help them germinate.

Every day, we checked the moisture of each toilet paper roll and added more water if necessary.  

Once the seedlings germinated, we removed the plastic wrap permanently and placed our seedlings by our bright, sunny kitchen window.

We are keeping the soil moist, but not soggy.

Soon, we will be able to plant our seedlings (with their toilet paper rolls) in the vegetable garden.  The cardboard from the toilet paper rolls will disintegrate into the soil.

Of course, you can always use the ready-made plastic seeding trays, but I must admit that I like this method better :-)

**Are you new to vegetable gardening in the desert?  We are fortunate that we can grow a large variety of vegetables, as well as fruit.  However, there are some challenges that are unique to our arid climate. George Brookbank's book,  Desert Gardening: Fruit & Vegetables is a helpful guide that takes the mystery out of growing vegetables, enabling you to enjoy this delicious hobby.


Diana Waite said...

what a FANTASTIC idea! Thanks!

D said...

This is a great idea. I love it. I have four little kids and am always saving these for art projects that never seem to happen. I have used styrofoam cups in the past for my veggies, but they take up a lot more room and I can't plant them. Thank you so much for sharing this.

Indie said...

Cute project! Looks like a great project for the kids!

Susan B. said...

I can totally see doing this with my Girl Scout Daisy troop.

Liza said...

I'm doing the same thing! They are so handy!

bakingbarb said...

I've been saving toilet paper rolls - on pinterest there are all these wonderful artsy type projects and so I started saving the rolls. I doubt very much my rolls are going to end up art, your idea is much better!

Backyard Farmer said...

We used newspaper to make our seed pots. It worked surprisingly well. The roots had no problem breaking through and since we were able to plant them paper and all, we didn't have to disturb the roots much when we stuck the plants in the ground.

Thanks for the great inspiration to use something that would otherwise end up in the landfill. :)

Tiffany @ No Ordinary Homestead said...

Such a great idea of seed planting! Too cute to see those seedlings in toilet paper rolls. I can't wait to see them growing. Thanks for sharing. I wanna try this too.I actually host a weekly gardening link up every Friday on my blog. I'd love for you to drop by and join in.

My Journey With Candida said...

LOL.... this is great!! My Hubs Is going to think I am crazy running aroung the house looking for empty toilet paper rolls.

Michele said...

I found your blog and I absolutely love it! Thank you so much for all of the great advice! I love this idea of starting seedlings in the toilet paper rolls, I am going to be doing this with flower seeds. I live in Phoenix and I am constantly trying to find advice for our hot climate! Thank you!!

Esther Beckwith said...

I've been saving rolls to wind my yarn on. Now i think I'll use them for my seeds. Thanks for the idea.


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