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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Ready to raise baby plants

I grew up in a greenhouse run by my grandpa. He's got the greenest thumb of anybody you'll ever have met. And since he only has one thumb, it's a super concentrated green thumb.

I'm assuming that my dad got a little bit of the genetic green thumb (but he's never gone outside long enough to garden. Us pale folk are delicate creatues in the sunlight). My mom has a tad of the brown thumb. She can kill tomato plants like it's an art. Mix my parents together, and I think I got a brownish-green thumb.

I've always loved growing plants. And now I live in a house that has a garden, and I signed the lease for another year. I'm going to garden. But I hate germinating plants in expensive peat moss planters, or those plastic things. I want something cheap. Then I read "Grow Great Grub", which suggested using cardboard tubes to germinate plants. Awesome. But the bottoms were left open in the book. And the whole tube was used. And then I read this article that I found on craftgawker:
And my first thought was "I need to do this right away". So I put on a few episodes of Eureka, and found my happy place to make a few dozen baby planters. I'll show you how. Let's gather our materials.

Step 1: Gather your supplies (which may take weeks):

  • cardboard tubes, e.g. toilet roll tubes, paper towel tubes.
  • scissors
  • a bit of spare time
I started scooping toilet rolls off the top of our garbage bin in the bathroom and placing them on the floor. My roommates eventually caught on and just kept adding to the pile, so I didn't have to dumpster dive.

Step 2/3
Step 2 and 3: Cut your toilet paper tube in half (if using a paper towel roll, use half a toilet roll for a template). Fold, because that helps with the next step.

Step 4
Step 4: Cut about 1/3 up the tube. Folding the toilet roll makes you have to cut less, because you need to make 4 cuts on the toll so that it can be folded like a cardboard box.

Step 5
 Step 5: Fold each flap down so that your cardboard tube takes a more square shape.

Step 6.

Step 6: Fold each flap down, moving around the flaps clockwise.
Step 7
Step 7: Tuck the last flap's corner down under the first flap, just like on large cardboard boxes.

Final Product: a tiny tiny slightly rounded box
The last step is something I didn't have time for: fill em up with soil and start germinating those seeds! It just snowed here in Saskatoon yesterday and today, so I'm really looking forward to green little sprouts. Happy Growing! 

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