There are numerous tips and tricks one can pick up from all the great Australian gardening blogs out there. One in particular is the wide rage of potting apparatus used to raise seedlings. But with so many option to choose from which one is right for me? So I thought I might go a bit potty and experiment with a few.
First I tried a pot on my head to see if it would make a formal hat. I think it does. What do you think?
Next a pot that is often blogged about is the newspaper pot. I think its popularity is due to it being organic, biodegradable, and making good use of those things kids on bikes just keep throwing on your door step. Its biodegradable quality is big plus as it means the pot can be planted along with the plant. Non of that tricky upside down stuff that risks infection and causes the plant to go into shock. Think of it from the plants point of view, becoming dislodged from your soil in the wild can only mean one thing... disaster. Carrots are one plant that is very sensitive to transplanting thus it is typically advised to sow them directly. Linda Woodrow however informed me that even carrots can be successfully raised using the paper pot technique. What I am unsure about is how well they last prior to planting out, and how quickly they break down when planted allowing the roots to escape.
The method we used was a quick and simple no fuss one, taught to us by Debbie at my gardening group.
1. Rip a page of newspaper horizontally in half. My first instinct was to tear it down the fold creating a right mess. The women in the group all knew to tear it across the page to get a perfectly straight rip. Did you know that?
2. Roll the paper around a cylindrical object like a drinking glass or jar.
3. Fold the bottom over to seal it. Once it is sitting in its tray it will hold closed.
4. Remove the glass and fold the top lip inwards to strengthen the rim. Done!
They held together well and stood up fine in the tray. They also squared off slightly when pushed together and filled with soil easily filling multiple at once. Next time I think I might use a slightly wider glass though.
Then we tried toilet roles. They are something a household produces in abundance and are ready to be used as is. Being bottom less they need to be in a tray or container with a solid bottom. I did think we could have used our normal seed tray and line it with newspaper. Put for this small experiment we used an ice cream container, with roles cut in the bottom of course. Being very thin and narrow we found the soil difficult to prevent from spilling into the container. I guess it will do no harm. I don’t think these pots will be good for all seedlings due to the width but they are definitely quick an easy. Even more so than the paper pots I question how quickly these will break down.
Finally, plastic 2 litter milk carton pots. Simply cut off the top and bottom to make bottom less pot. Like the toilet roles they require a solid based container or tray or one lined with paper. They appear large enough to accommodate any seedling and due to being square they fill easily. My only complaint, is if like Melanie and I you like things to look nice, it is really hard and time consuming to peal off the labels. Unless there is a trick to it?
So I will let you know how they go. BTW do you remember that pop band that wore pots on their heads? Watching this it will take you back...
Love to hear your great potting ideas.