Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day--Transplants

When Beo and I were shopping for seed trays recently, I found myself going all "Ooh, shiny!" over a little wooden "Pot Maker". The Richter PotMaker is basically a wooden pestle and shallow mortar, which you wrap strips of newspaper around, fold over the bottom of the pestle, and then press shut with the pestle. I went ahead and picked it up for $12.95, fully knowing that it might not actually replace the strips of peat jiffy pots we were buying for $17.95. It was too nifty not to give it a shot. In past years, we've used peat pots minimally, trying instead to reuse plastic seed trays, but the transplant shock sets us so far behind that we're converting more. I figured Earth Day was a good day to give it a go (particularly because with how busy we've been we're getting behind schedule to get transplants started!). We don't get the newspaper, but Beo had asked a local restaurant for their old newspaper, and I stopped by the library for theirs. Lo and behold, the thing really works. You cut strips of newspaper about an inch wider than the bottom part of the pestle, and the width of one page of newspaper, give or take. I tried using double and single thickness--both worked fine. Roll it up, tuck the ends under, smash it, and voila--a little transplant pot! It took me less than 10 minutes to make 20 of them and get them seeded with pepper seeds. The kids helped me after school and we made some more--20 Wisconsin Lake Peppers and 16 Buran Peppers will be testing out these first batches of pots. (Those 36 fit well in a standard seed tray.) It doesn't take much newspaper at all to make them. Happily, the little it does use keeps that newspaper from having to be recycled, and saves us from having to use manufactured peat pots. If these work well as the seedlings get bigger, I will definitely do more of them next year. Just a little way to remember that we can celebrate Earth Day every day, in little ways. Keep on keepin' on.

1 comment:

gustoso said...

I love the pot maker. Hope it works better then loo paper rolls