Planting Seeds In Cardboard Tubes

by Tammy Taylor~

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OMGosh y’all, spring is almost here!!  I’ve already used my garden planner to decide what I’m going to plant and where in the garden this year, and I’ve planted up my indoor greenhouse so I’ll have heirloom seedlings to drop in the ground around Easter (we’re in planting zone 8 here in NE Texas).  All of this is standard, I do it every year.  But one thing that’s NEW for me is how I’ve planted these heirloom seeds.  I typically plant my seedlings in plastic yogurt cups saved for me by a family member but this year I’m also experimenting with planting in cardboard tubes.  I’ve read when it’s time to put your precious seedlings into the garden that the whole shootin’ match – cardboard tube & all – can be placed in the soil!  The cardboard will simply decompose and enrich the soil.  I like that!

I'll plant the seedlings - cardboard tube & all right in my garden! The cardboard will simply decompose and enrich the soil #TaylorMadeHomestead

I typically toss my cardboard toilet paper tubes into my *tumbling composter to help supply the much-needed carbon material.   (DANG I love that thing!)  But I knew I’d be giving this new seed-planting medium a try this year so I’ve been saving my toilet paper rolls for a while.    Now it’s finally time to put them all to good use.

I'll plant the seedlings - cardboard tube & all right in my garden! The cardboard will simply decompose and enrich the soil #TaylorMadeHomesteadI bring out my saved rolls and flattened them out.  Then I cut into the bottom about 3/4 inch.  Then I flattened the tube the other way and cut another 3/4 inch on the opposite side, resulting in four slits cut in the bottom of each tube spaced approximately evenly.

I'll plant the seedlings - cardboard tube & all right in my garden! The cardboard will simply decompose and enrich the soil #TaylorMadeHomesteadWhile they were flattened out I took a permanent marker and wrote on each tube what kind of seed I would plant in them.  Instant plant markers!  LOL  Then I just went around and folded each section down and tucked the last section underneath the first, making a closed bottom.  EASY!

I'll plant the seedlings - cardboard tube & all right in my garden! The cardboard will simply decompose and enrich the soil #TaylorMadeHomesteadNow I take my seed-starting mix and fill my new planting tube about 3/4 of the way, pressing firmly to pack it in well.  Now all that’s left to do is to add a seed and top with soil.  But I figured once I watered these tubes they might start to unravel with the moisture so I packed my planted tubes into various containers such as the bottom cut from a juice bottle, an old metal loaf pan and the like.

I'll plant the seedlings - cardboard tube & all right in my garden! The cardboard will simply decompose and enrich the soil #TaylorMadeHomestead

I gave all my newly-planted seeds a quick drink and placed the containers inside my Indoor Greenhouse so they’d have the moist environment they love to sprout quickly.  I’m already seeing many heirloom veggie seeds sprouting!  Now when it’s finally time to plant my seedlings outside I’ll be able to drop the heirloom seedling – tube and all – into the soil.  LOVE IT!

~TMH~

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25 thoughts on “Planting Seeds In Cardboard Tubes

  1. Robin

    You always share the best tips, I learn so much from you! Thanks for always sharing them at the Creative Muster. PINNED Robin | Fluster Buster

    Reply
  2. Brandi Raae

    I really like this idea. I just planted a bunch of flower seeds and am just hoping for the best. 😉 I’d love for you to share this idea with my readers at the Literacy Musing Mondays link-up: http://www.brandiraae.com/literacy-musing-mondays-march-13-18/ Blessings on your garden. 🙂

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Thanks for the invite Brandi. Think I’ll ‘hop’ on over & check it out. ~TMH~

      Reply
  3. Elaine

    What a great idea!! I love anytime we can up cycle something!! !Thanks for sharing on My 2 Favorite Things on Thursday!! Hope to see you tomorrow!! Pinned!

    Reply
  4. Victoria Tillman

    I’m making my seed starters form different materials already and these cardboard tubes are a good idea too. I’m usually using old newspapers or egg cartons and often forget how easy and fast is to turn these tubes into starters. Thank you for sharing this great info and happy gardening!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      I’ve never tried planting in cardboard tubes before, Victoria. But I’m a huge fan of “Use Whatcha Got” mentality. I’m pretty excited to see how they do! ~TMR~

      Reply
  5. Lisa @ Fun Money Mom

    What a great idea…I’ll have to try this! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Share The Wealth Sunday! xoxo

    Reply
  6. Renee

    I love learning of new ways to start seeds. I really like this idea. So inexpensive and you get to reuse what you already have. Great idea!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      I know Renee, RIGHT??! I’m so excited to get in the garden & plant my seedling in the soil – tube & all! ~TMH~

      Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Thanks Debbie, it’s certainly nothing new but this is my first year to try it. I can’t wait to get in the garden with them! ~TMH~

      Reply
  7. Margy

    I’ve used portions of cardboard tubes to protect my seed planted directly in the soil from cutworms. Can’t swear it works, but whatever I can do to help my seedlings survive is worth a try. – Margy

    Reply
  8. gigi

    That is such a cool idea! I love how you can put the whole tube into the ground! Much better than yogurt containers!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      I can’t wait to see how it all works out gigi. And I know paper/cardboard is good for earthworms so it’s a double win! ~TMH~

      Reply
  9. JES

    We have done this too and I love that you can place the WHOLE tube into the soil!!! No need to accidentally dismember the plant when you are transplanting it! 🙂 As always, thank you for sharing at the Art of Home-Making Mondays! I love your ideas!

    Reply
  10. Laurinda

    I’m looking forward to your updates on the cardboard tubes. Holy cats- using stale ice cream cones is genius!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      So far they’re working great Laurinda – I have lots of sprouting plants going on in my indoor greenhouse. I. Can’t. WAIT! ~TMH~

      Reply
  11. ColleenB.~Texas

    Cardboard tubes work Great for seed planting. Can also use newspaper if folded just right. I have used those rotisserie chicken containers as a mini greenhouse and believe it or not ice cream cones (the round bottom ones, not the sugar cones) Using the ice cream cones started when I had part of a box that went stale so instead of throwing them out, I saved them till it was seed starting time and planted my little seeds in them cones.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      I’ve heard of making little newspaper pots too Colleen, but never thought about other planting containers such as your ice cream cones. You know my battle cry: “Use WhatCha Got!” 🙂 ~TMH~

      Reply

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