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29.1.13

Square Newspaper Seed Starting Pots

When you are in the grips of seed starting season you’re looking around the house for items you can upcycle into seed starting pots. Along with yogurt cups, takeout containers, and soda bottle seed starters don’t forget to dive into the recycling bin and make your own seed starting pots from newspaper. You can roll-your-own seed starting pots from newspaper, but you can also make square newspaper seed starting pots, too.

Make your own square newspaper seed starting pots

Making your own seed starting pots from newspaper is an eco-friendly way of starting seeds for your garden. You keep newspaper out of landfills--if you aren’t recycling it--and it is cheaper than buying seed starting pots every year.

Newspaper Seed Starting Pots Supplies


Square newspaper seed starting pots

Obviously, you need newspaper to make these seed starting pots. A pen or marker to help you make lines, scissors to score your guide lines, and either tape or stapler.

How to Make Your Own Square Newspaper Pots

Cut your newspaper sheets into large squares. It helps if you use a square pot or container to ensure you make the base of your square newspaper pots large enough to hold more than two seedlings. Make your guidelines by drawing lines from the corners of your template pot to the corners of your newspaper. I used a marker to help illustrate this step, but you can use pencil or nothing at all and just make the cuts.

square newspaper pots folding directions

The next step, after you have cut along your guidelines, is to fold the edges of the newspaper sheets in the sequence I have marked. Fold in the first tab, and then fold in the second and third tab. Try to get the edges of tabs two and three to overlap.

folding square seed starting pots

Now either staple or tape the three tabs of your newspaper seed starting pot together and repeat the folding and stapling for the bottom of the other side of the pot.

Square newspaper seed starting pots

You now have a perfectly square newspaper pot you can use to plant more than one seedling, or you can use these newspaper seedling pots to pot-up smaller seedlings into a pot with more room for their roots to grow.

Newspaper Seed Starting Tips

As I mentioned above, you do not need to use a marker to make your guidelines. You can use pencil or nothing at all. Use newspaper printed with soy ink to make your seed starting pots. If you are unsure of what kind of ink is used to print the newspaper you have on hand, pull out any sheets that use color ink and leave those in the recycling bin.

If you have ever started seeds in newspaper pots before you know that after a couple of weeks they can start to fall apart pretty easy. It is best to use newspaper seed pots for seedling you will be transplanting out into the garden soon. You can make your newspaper seed starting pots a little more durable if you use a minimum of four sheets. Finally, when you are ready to plant your newspaper seed starting pots in the garden, pull out the staples or tape you used to hold them in place.

Need more seed starting tips? Check out the tab here for seed saving and seed starting tips. It lists all of the seed starting and seed saving posts and garden videos I have made on the subject. You can also use my Seed Snatcher custom search engine that is exclusively about seed buy, seed starting, and seed saving.

Do you make your own seed starting pots from newspaper?

19 comments:

  1. Those are so much nicer and sturdier than the round things. It's also easier to make with my kids. Thanks for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. MMG, One thing I like about the square newspaper seed starting pots over the round newspaper pots is that the bottom is flat. The round pots can lean or tip over, but the flat surface of these pots makes them a lot more stable.

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  2. i make them with news papers too, but round ones : http://www.mooisvanme.blogspot.be/2012/03/zaaitijdtips.html

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    Replies
    1. Yeah, the round ones are good too. I make the round newspaper seed starting pots with a soda can http://mrbrownthumb.blogspot.com/2007/03/seed-starting-pots-from-newspaper.html

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  3. I agree with the square pot, it is much more stable and if you need a smaller one you can always use a smaller square for measure. Happy gardening to you all...

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    Replies
    1. Renata, For sure. If you need smaller pots you can always try a smaller square. I think the milk carton size square would be really good.

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  4. Replies
    1. Thanks for the feedback on the newspaper seed starting pots, Carolyn.

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  5. Its really a good reminder that nobody needs to buy seedling pots as there is so much around the house we could use to start seeds. I've never tried square. Nice tutorial.

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    Replies
    1. Yeah, virtually any container you have in your house can be turned into a seed starting pot if you put some thought into it.

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  6. nice idea, like your wooden stapler too,
    and the first photo of your hands cradling the pot with basil
    wild to think about sprouting seeds already,
    crazy to see iris sprouting in january

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    Replies
    1. Hi Tess,
      The first photo is of one of my nephews who likes to help in the garden. We are having a crazy spring-like winter, but I actually took these pictures last spring/summer to post this winter. One of the reasons there aren't that many posts here a month is because I usually have an idea, plan it out, execute it in the garden, and then write about it the following spring.

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  7. Finally, something useful I can do with old newspapers!

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  8. Great idea, love the square shape!

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  9. I was wondering if you have grown patchouli from seed. I just purchased some patchouli seed, which cost me a small fortune. I planted the seeds in a peat cup using s soda bottle as a cloche. I wanted to try the plastic bag method, but my success with seeds needs improvement. If you have any advice growing this herb in IN., please advise. oohlala7980@gmail.com

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  10. A great way to recycle old newspapers. Thanks for the tutorial. Its simple but have never thought of it.

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  11. What a great idea! I didn't know newspaper was strong enough. This post was also super timely for me as I need to pot ups some seedlings! Thanks!

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  12. Oh, yes, I love the seed-starting pots made of paper: http://rake-and-spade.blogspot.in/2011/02/seed-germination.html

    I had a few boxes made of package material; have converted them into seed-starting pots. Because the material doesn't absorb water, the soil retains water, and this feature helps a lot during summer months (when we have shortage of water supply).

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  13. This is so cool! Just found your blog. It's really inspiring. I'm not really good with plants but I'm starting a collection of succulents and cacti :)

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Hi!

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