My favorite part of gardening is growing plants from seeds I haven't grown before. Oftentimes it seems like the best flowers come from really small seeds. Small garden seeds, like the bee balm pictured below, pose the unique problem of how to best go about watering the small seeds and seedlings. You can water seeds from the bottom to keep the small seeds from spilling out of their seed starting pots. If you're growing a lot of small seeds you may not have enough time to sit there and submerge individual seed pots in water. Then there's the issue of gardening with kids. Their little brains sometimes don't easily grasp the idea of when they should stop watering your seeds and seedlings.
That's the issue I faced in my garden this year when starting seeds and had my nephews and niece eager to "haylp" with the chore of watering seeds. When the kids watered the seeds they either washed out of the pots or the seedlings were bent and broken under the force of the water. I went to the garden center in search of a watering can that they could hold and carry, but that would release water in a gentle manner to keep the seedlings in their pots and unbroken.
Not finding any watering cans that seem just right, I improvised some homemade watering cans out of plastic bottles and milk jugs. I simply punched holes in the lids with a sewing needle as pictured above. The water bottle watering cans worked great for watering small seeds in little seed starting pots. The milk jugs were better for watering seeds outdoors that had been directly sown into the garden soil as they could hold more water. Poke as many small holes as you can fit on the lid for a gentler stream of water.
No more tiny seeds washed away and no more seedlings bent or broken because tiny gardener brains don't know when to stop watering. Being able to recruit the kids to help water seeds and seedlings I realized just how foolish it is to water seedlings from the bottom because it takes so much time that could be spent doing something else like talking about gardening on the internet. Hope you find this tip useful and try it out when you're looking for ways to efficiently water small seeds and seedlings.