Thursday, March 08, 2012

to believe in the future

I started winter-sowing some seeds a few days ago in empty milk jugs.  The act of planting made me feel like spring wasn't so far off, even if the planters were sitting in a snowdrift.  I started looking around thinking "what else can I make into a mini greenhouse?"  There were some plastic storage bins in my workspace that I was no longer using and I figured they fit the bill.

The bins are about 7" deep which is deep enough to accomodate soil and growing seedlings, and they were mostly clear.  It would have been much easier if the lids were clear also, but this is what I had to work with so I just went with it.

I gathered up the bins, some duct tape, a carpet knife, and my cordless drill. 

I loaded my chuck with a wood screw, but a drill bit would have worked too.

Running the drill in reverse, I punched holes in the lid of the bin.  (why reverse?  Going forward the screw would screw down into the plastic, forcing me to put the drill in reverse to remove it.  In reverse the screw still punctures the plastic without getting stuck)

Lots of holes.  This blue lid will become the bottom of my greenhouse so I wanted plenty of drainage.

I then flipped the box over and did the same to the now top - the clear part of the bin.

I won't be moving these often but I wanted the pieces to be secure if I did need to move my little greenhouse to a new location.  Using the duct tape, I taped the lid to the box.

I cut a flap (carefully) along three sides of the top of the box.

This will be my access point for adding soil and harvesting seedlings.

I taped a stick, slightly longer than the box, to the flap to act as a handle for the lid, and to keep the flap from getting stuck down in the box and smooshing my plants.

I filled my greenhouse with about 4" of potting soil and sowed my seeds.

Betty came over to inspect the latest greenhouse, prompting me to flip the open part of the flap towards the house so she'd be less likely to get in there and eat up my seeds.  Because she totally would.

Our growing season is pretty short here so if this works and I'm able to get a little jump on planting, I'll be one excited girl.

It's said that to plant a garden is to believe in the future.  Right now I'm believing in future salads.  And teas.  And veggies.  I can't wait.


lynn bowes said...

Look at you go, girl! My gardening books are spread on top of the tax stuff on the dining table so I get it.

Get this - I have daylilies coming up! Yikes! They must have seen me out earlier this week scratching and digging at the dirt to see what's green (me and Betty).


Tree Dellinger said...

This is the first year that I haven't been itching to start my seeds before mid-March. After years of dealing with pale, spindly tomato seedlings that succumbed to dampening off due to cool, wet temps, I've finally gotten comfortable with the knowledge that I'll still have plenty of tomatoes even if I wait until late March to start my seeds. This is a HUGE milestone for me as a gardener! : )

Amy said...

Very clever! Apparently, Betty knows a good thing when she sees one!

Unknown said...

This is a marvelous idea, and a great tutorial, Lisa - I am such a BAD grower of plants, but love the thought of it, and spring seed catalogs are a trove of dreams... good luck with your gardening, girl! xxoo, sus

Wear Your Wild said...

Bad Betty! :)
I just came in from taking some garden photos. Spring is so early here this year, it just doesn't seem real yet.
Love your mini greenhouse!

NanaBeast said...

That Betty! What a stinker. I love her. I am so impressed with your clever, and I do mean clever, seed starting greenhouse. I am also grateful for the the reverse drilling tip! Thanks.

Margie Oomen said...

can't wait to mess about in the garden this weekend.

Brenda said...

You have the neatest ideas! I absolutely love this one. :)

leFiligree said...

i love this method because you don't have to harden the seedlings off, and you can pop them in the ground earlier than nursery plants--i go when there are 2 true leaves. you're way ahead of me this year--i havent even bought my seeds!

Erin said...

Mmmm... such a clever idea! I am impressed every time I visit here, really!


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