April 4, 2009

Birth of an Egg Baby

I spent quite a bit of time in the yard today, trying to figure out what I'm going to do with what. I don't really have a lot to show for my efforts yet (except for a dirty, tired body) so no pictures of that today.

Of the three tomato seeds I planted last week, only the one has come up so far but it is going strong. It went from barely poking through the ground yesterday (see photo in yesterday's blog entry here) to about 1.5" today, so it was time to pot up from the eggshell 'bassinet' to a 'crib' to allow the roots to get longer and stronger.

I had saved an orange juice carton so cut it in half, washed it, and poked a few small holes in the bottom for the 'crib'.

After adding some dirt to about 3/4 of the way full and a thin layer of seed starter mix on top of that, I took the seedling and tapped the bottom of the eggshell to break it so the roots can finagle their way through easily. Since eggshells have calcium, you can leave the little bits of cracked shell right in the soil for an added bit of nourishment for your growing baby.

I set it down into the soil so that the eggshell is about half covered.

I then filled in with more seed starter mix until the eggshell and about half of the seedling was covered, leaving more room in the 'crib' to add more soil as it gets leggy.

I water my seeds and seedlings with a recycled contact lens solution bottle. It allows me to direct the water in a very small area without using much force that might dislodge a seed or damage a seedling.

I just started playing with gardening last year but I started all my tomato plants this way and had 100% germination and plants well over 6' tall with large, juicy red fruit. I'm no expert by any means, but it worked for me!

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