DIY Biodegradable Seed Starter Pots

Newspaper Seed Starters
Newspaper Seed Starters

Starting seed doesn’t have to be expensive by going out and buying those pre-made kits or the little peat pots or trays.  You can use what you already have lying around at home.  Seeds are also much less expensive than buying plants or plugs.

Products you can use to make biodegradable pots are egg cartons, newspaper or toilet paper/paper towel rolls.   In our example we used newspaper.  You’ll also need scissors and form.  You can use an empty toilet paper roll or a 6 oz. can (like the kind a small can like tomato paste comes in).

Directions are as easy as this:

  • Use a couple of sheets of newspaper, cut them into thirds lengthwise.
  • Place your form (TP roll or can) on the newspaper leaving a good inch of the form hanging off the end.
  • Roll the form along the newspaper loosely until it’s wrapped all the way around.  Too tight and it’s hard to remove the newspaper from the form.
  • Then just fold the edges of the newspaper down over the form all the way around forming the bottom of the pot.
  • Flip the form over right side up and press down firmly.
  • Slide the form out and you’ve created your own biodegradable pot!

Once your pots are filled with compost soil, place the pots on a tray and moisten the soil very gently.  If support is needed, line other pots up – this also helps maintain moisture in the paper walls of the pots and plant your seed.  The location of you seed pots should be in a warm, sun filled window.  In a couple of days you should see tiny little green shoots.

Once your seedlings are large enough and weather allows you can start bringing them outside for the day.  Just bring them in at night for a good week prior to planning them.  This will help harden them up a bit prior to transplanting into your garden or larger pots such as planters or hanging baskets.

Benefits of biodegradable pots are when you’re transplanting the seedlings into the garden or a larger container you can plant newspaper right with the plant.  The newspaper will decompose naturally into the soil and doesn’t’ stress out the young root system of your plants.