Our Seed Starting Challenge for 2019 is almost over! We are on Day 5 of the challenge, so that means that we only have three more planting days left to plant our remaining recyclable planters. We have yet to plant in toilet paper rolls, ice cream cones and sticks or logs with large cracks or holes.
Today, we used an empty paper towel roll cut into three pieces for this challenge. The kids, however, were not aware of the planter to be used today and gave me some mighty strange looks when confronted with a piece of paper towel roll. They wanted to know just how an empty tube could keep soil from falling out, and it was ultimately decided that a tube could NOT make a planter.
Could they be any more wrong?
With one flip of the thumb, I had half of the bottom of our soon-to-be-planter folded in. The solution became clear and the kids jumped into folding their empty paper roll. We liked the idea of the paper towel roll planter because they are a recyclable that is constantly and readily available if you use toilet paper, the size is perfect, and when planting in a garden, the whole plant - planter and all - can be placed right into the garden as-is. Having said all that, although the folding was easy for the children to understand, we soon realized that little fingers found this task to be difficult. It was important to push the end down from both the outside and the inside at the same time. Otherwise, the folding was easy. Also, these planters also do not sit well on a flat surface, but worked quite nicely when placed within a larger pail or tray.
To fold in an empty toilet paper roll for planting, use your thumb to fold in half of the bottom like this:
Finish folding in the other half. Now, there are two points still sticking up. Carefully press those pointy corners down from both the inside of the tube and the outside at the same time. This will add a bit of thickness and stability to the bottom of the planter.
Once again, use a smaller shovel to fill the tube with soil and ready it for planting. Once the seeds are tucked in, water, cover in plastic and put in a sunny window. Our plant count is now up to 15 and we are all really excited to finally see some growth!
I do hope you and your children are having fun with this 2019 Seed Starting Challenge. Don’t forget to post your photos to a challenge post on our facebook page to enter the contest and win your very own organic Matchbox Garden and Seed Co. seeds!