Recently I discovered it’s possible to make newspaper seedling pots I had to share this easy seed-growing option with you. These pots are not only free, but they’re good for the environment and you don’t have to disturb a seedling’s root system when you replant it. That’s right – you can put these pots straight into the ground!
I’ve been looking for an ideal ground cover for our front tropical garden for at least a year now and I’ve finally found one. It’s Dichondra Repens, or the Kidney Bean plant and is a lush, spreading alternative to grass. You may have heard of it’s popular cousin, the Dichondra Silver Falls.
Each small punnet of Dichondra Repens is around $5. When you’ve go a bit of ground to cover, it adds up quick! Fortunately I found seed packets for the same price (with hundreds of seeds inside) from Mr Fothergills. To plant them I decided to try something new: enter the DIY newspaper seedling pots!
It’s possible to plant seeds straight into the ground. However sometimes I think it’s best to grow them in stable conditions and transplant them once they are a little more established. Rather than buying a bunch of plastic seed trays, newspaper seedling pots are an easy (and free!) way to grow seeds before planting them in their final location.
The great thing about making your own newspaper seedling pots is that newspaper is biodegradable. This means you can plant the pot straight into the ground or into a larger pot. The newspaper will degrade over time and the plant’s roots with grow through the newspaper when they are ready. It’s the perfect system, really!
When plants are young, it can be daunting to repot or plant them when their roots are so delicate. With newspaper seedling pots you don’t have to worry about any damage to the plant when you replant them.
So, let’s get into making your own!
Make Your Own Newspaper Seedling Pots
You will need:
-Seeds & soil
-A tray, such as a shallow plastic container
I’ve made a video tutorial to help with understanding how to fold the pots – scroll down to view it.
To start, cut strips of newspaper as high as you’d like your pots to be, plus an inch. I’ve found around 3 inches high is a good starting point (your pots only need to be small for seedlings!)
Begin to fold the strip of newspaper in sections of about 2 inches. Fold it over and over until you reach the end.
Then, unravel the newspaper and form the first four folds into a square, wrapping the rest of the length of newspaper into the shape.
At one end of the newspaper ‘tube’, fold around an inch of each side into the centre of the tube. This will form the base of your newspaper pot. The good thing about these pots is that your measurements don’t need to be too accurate. You may have a hole in the base of the pot, but that is fine to help with drainage.
Repeat the process for as many pots as you’d like!
Place the pots inside a tray. This will help them stay upright and also catch any excess water. Fill your pots with damp soil and plant your seeds according to the instructions.
Put the tray in a bright, warm place and don’t forget to water them before the soil dries out.
Once your seedlings start growing, you can transplant the pots into the ground (or a larger pot).
Newspaper is said to decompose within 2-6 weeks, so it won’t take long after you plant your seedlings for the newspaper to get out of your plant’s way.
Remember that the newspaper seedling pots won’t last forever, so you may need to plant them within a couple months.
If you’re interested in growing seeds, check out these DIY seed-growing clay hearts that make a cute, inexpensive gift for giving flowers.