Picture of Mini seedling greenhouse
Make an easy mini greenhouse from trash to raise seedlings.

Step 1: Find a container

Picture of Find a container
A clear plastic berry box with a hinged lid will become the greenhouse.
jlyvers7432 years ago
What a wonderful idea and very well explained, thank you!
ClareBS (author)  jlyvers7432 years ago
Thanks, it's my most popular instructable!
Incredible simple, but excellent idea. Will plant my pomegranate seed, Thank you.
ClareBS (author)  chalespinosa3 years ago
Thanks for your comment and good luck with your pomegranate seed.
This is awesome! great idea. :D
I gather old refrigerator trays and veg. bins from appliance stores before they throw them away or junk them . I start alot of seeds this way. hope this helps someone.
ClareBS (author)  Vicki in Ohio3 years ago
Good idea, I like re-using things too. Free is best.
Good idea! When planting the seedlings you have to make sure all of the cardboard is buried. Otherwise it will evaporate the water around it,thus damaging the roots.
ClareBS (author)  Hildegardista3 years ago
I add a collar of cardboard around all seedlings when I plant them, otherwise the cutworms chew them off at the stem overnight.
hyazzie3 years ago
annnnnd done! this was suuper easy and fun thanks:)
My tip for an easy way to make holes in your plastic containers.If you have a metal skewer for kabobs heat the tip for a few seconds and poke away. If it cools down reheat. Just be careful and remember one end is HOT.
ClareBS (author)  mlayton howell3 years ago
That's a good idea. I have a pyrography tool for wood burning, I might even try that with a spare tip.
bajablue3 years ago
I love the entire concept of this Ible!

5 Stars!!!
ClareBS (author)  bajablue3 years ago
Thanks. Lately I've made it even more simple. I simply tamp seed raising or potting mix into a toilet roll tube not even closing the bottom. If the mix is tamped in it stays there. Sometimes I leave the roll whole, sometimes I cut them in half. The part of the roll that stays above ground when planted in the garden even deters cutworms which kill a lot of seedlings in my garden.
jwoo20234 years ago
can't you tape the holes up?
ClareBS (author)  jwoo20234 years ago
You could tape up the holes but then water might settle in the greenhouse and waterlog the seedlings. Better to let them drain.
Why don't you try it without the container? Soil Blocks are easy and work really well: http://www.instructables.com/id/Make-Super-Cheap-Seed-Starters/
ClareBS (author)  velacreations4 years ago
Great instructable for professional-looking seed raising blocks. I might even try it!
bhenson5 years ago
The little pots made from TP tubes is a great idea.  I have a large family and we generate alot of these!

I made "mini greenhouses" for some of my seedlings this year using plastic shoeboxes I had around.  I drilled a couple of holes in the bottom for drainage on one shoebox, filled it with soil and planted my seeds.  The other shoebox went on top--upside down.  I held them together with a binder clip at each end.  They looked alot like something you would pay actual money for in those gardening catalogs.  I planted directly in these for salad fixin's in March, when it was too early yet to plant outside, but they would do well for the little TP tube pots, too. 
ClareBS (author)  bhenson4 years ago
Using plastic shoeboxes is a cool idea. Anything free to help the garden grow and keep us out of the supermarket is a great idea.
veggiedude4 years ago
Awesome idea!! I had a buddy at work tell me about your idea using tp tubes. I had to see it!! I have been saving the tubes for awhile now. Thanks for giving me something to use them for. YOU ROCK!!!
ClareBS (author)  veggiedude4 years ago
I've come up with an improvement which helps the seedlings grow after they are transplanted.
Use the full length of the tp tube. crumple up a small bit of newspaper to stuff in the bottom third or so then fill with seed raising mix. When the seedlings are big enough to transplant just pull out the newspaper and tear off the empty bit of tp tube. The roots will hold the soil in place long enough to plant and the roots won't have to push through anything. The collar at the top of the tube also helps keep cutworms off the seedlings until they can fend for themselves.
Happy gardening!
fixitbear5 years ago
Thanks for your note.

When I try to make holes in a container like this I usually end up with a useless wadded up piece of plastic.
fixitbear5 years ago
How and with what tool/s did you use to get the perfectly round holes in the plastic without breaking it?

This is a great idea by the way.
ClareBS (author)  fixitbear5 years ago
The plastic container, which had strawberries in it, came that way. I don't know of an easy way to make holes in a plastic container. When I make holes in yoghurt containers I use the point of a pair of kitchen scissors over a block of wood to keep the holes fairly small.
neddup985 years ago
Great! So far my never-throw-anything-away-policy had only one use for toilet roll cores  - keeping appliance cords tidy  - and used yogurt cups for seedlings. These dinky little pots are perfect for germinating single seeds. Wet the bottom to encourage them to sit square before filling with soil.

Our town is running an Earth Day soon. I'll have a sample with me to show our local horticultural society.
ClareBS (author)  neddup985 years ago
Thanks, I look forward to "seeing" the seedling pots at your Earth Day event.
Yea! I've already got 12 little pots germinating seeds - parsley, cilantro, lavender - for planting this spring and there is another strawberry basket in the fridge just waiting to be emptied. These particular containers hold a 3x4 array very nicely.

You can use paper towel cores as well but they are a little more substantial. I like how the toilet role cores soften up when the are wetted. They will allow the roots to grow  through them  easily.

We are in eastern Canada. March has been unbelievable. No snow for the first time in recorder history and +30C only a couple of days ago but pissing with rain today. It's gonna be an early season. I have great hopes that your little pots will come through for me.

Best regards

RICKBUD5 years ago
handprints5 years ago
So very very cool!!!  I love it and will make it very very soon!!!
what a smart idea. Thanks I am going to do this, i hate throwing away the plastic berry containers.