Introduction: Inexpensive Seed Starter Pods

In this instructable I am going to show you how to make seed starter pots for nothing but a little labor and things that you have at home.


toilet paper or paper towel cores

scissors or band saw (optional)

disposable aluminum baking tray or plastic seed starting tray (from prior years plant purchases)

plastic venetian blind slats (for identifying seed in each pot)

felt tip marker

sheet of paper for recording assigned number and seed information

shrink wrap for covering newly planted seeds

seed starter medium

Step 1: Getting Started

Most people have toliet paper and paper towels in their home. After the product is used we're left with the inner core, which is probably just thrown away. I'm going to show you a way to use these cores to start your own vegetable or flower seed early, inside.

Step 2: Cutting the Cores

Take the paper product core and use a pair of scissors to cut the toilet paper core in half and the paper towel core in fourths. You can also use a band saw instead of scissors. Now you have "Seed Starter Pots."

Step 3: Filling the Core

Put your hand over the back end of these seed starter pots and push starter mix soil into the core, and push it against your hand that is blocking the end of the pot. This compacts the starter mix and holds it in the pot. Add more starter mix until it is as full as you want it. Then plant your seed in the soil.

Step 4: Pans

I used a 9" X 13" X 2" aluminum baking pan or a 11" X 21" X 2" plastic seedling tray that I have gotten from the nursery in prior years, when I bought plants, to put the 2" starter pots in that you just made. I put drain holes in both pans so the starter pots don't have to be taken out for watering. Just set the container pans in a sink with water in it, wait for the starter pots to suck the water up, pull trays out and let the excess water drain out. I then cover the trays with clear plastic wrap until the seeds start to germinate. Once they germinate, remove the wrap.

Step 5: Marking Your Plantings

I used slats from a discarded venitian blind to ID each starter pot. I cut each blind slat into small 3" pieces. Trying to write the complete name of each item planted on the marker strips is difficult, so I assigned each planting a number and created a cheat sheet with the number corresponding to the plant name. I also noted the date planted and the days to germination.