Have you ever looked at garbage on your car floor and thought "hey, i could probably grow things in that"? Well i had that thought today looking at my husbands garbage on my cars floor from KFC. Perhaps you've heard of their Go Cups? Smart design to keep your different entrees apart from each other and able to fit into your cars cup holder. Also it comes with a tall domed lid.
After looking at one on the car floor while stopped for a train, i thought to myself "if i drilled a few drainage holes in that, i could totally start seedlings in it."
So there you have it. I will Attempt to show you the way i've done it, and a method that works for me. Here's your material list:
-a couple of KFC Go Cups with lids
-hydroton clay balls (great for all kinds of planters, doesn't add as much weight as gravel, left over from my hydroponics system i made a few years ago)
-peat moss pellets (they are pretty sterile and easy to use)
-a drill and drill bit
-Clear tape, if one of your domes was cracked from being stepped on like one of mine was.
Step 1: Step 1 Drill Holes in Your Cups
Step 1 is misleading, because I will assume that you've already washed out your Go Cup with warm soapy water, as we all know things like meat and grease don't easily compost, they will just add an extra element of uncertainty to your project.
Now, down to the REAL first step.This might be the most dangerous part of your whole build process after eating the fast food that came in the cups. Drilling 1 hole in each side of your cup. I also drilled holes in the lid to cut down on the possibility of my seedlings rotting in the stagnant air.
If your a kid, or somebody with questionable coordination, you may want to save the money you'll be paying the Doctor for sutures, and go ahead and get a steady handed adult to help you out with this. Also i would not personally recommend drilling through your cups on your nice coffee table. I personally didn't have any problems, but i could see a drill going straight into the top of a nice surface and being super bummed out about having to make an instructable on how to plug drill holes in a coffee table top.
Step 2: Step 2 or 3 Depending on How Your Last Step Went
Step 2 or 3 is adding the Hydroton clay balls into the bottom of the cup. I put it all the way up to where the cup widens for drainage. Also i don't plan on keeping plants inside of these long enough for them to need that extra root space. If you don't have Hydroton and don't want to fork the $30ish out for a bag to use in all of your pots, you could use gravel, aquarium gravel, styrofoam peanuts (not the kind made from corn, those turn into mush when they meet water), or even bark mulch could work. As long as it keeps the dirt in and lets the water out, it will work just fine for this purpose.
Step 3: Step 3ish: Add Your Soil/growing Media
I used a compressed peat disc, soaked in boiling water. One large disc was enough for both containers. You could also use potting soil, top soil, peat moss, or if your in a bind (or living in a dorm room) you could steal some dirt from a near by field or flower patch so long as nobody sees you steal dirt.
Step 4: Step 4: Add Your Seeds
Add whatever you plan on starting out in here. I chose cilantro, cat grass, and cat nip x2. I would suggest labeling which part you put each seed in if you are doing different kinds in a single container. You could do that with a sharpie or if you plan on reusing these a few times you could class it up by 10% and use some painters tape with the seed name on the side.
Step 5: Finished
Put your dome lids back on and you are done. Place these babies in some indirect sunlight and keep the dirt moist and you should be in business. Hopefully this was helpful enough to get you some seedlings or full sized plants even.