Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Newspaper pots

Ever thought about buying one of those wood "things" that make newspaper pots? Well, except for the fact that they look nice they are totally irrelevant. There are lots and lots of links on line for many different styles of newspaper pots. Part of my issue with the purchased wood pot maker is that it is only one size. So here are some links for different ideas that I stumbled on while looking for refresher ideas. You can use them to make many many recyclable pots of different sizes. By the way---if your community like mine does not recycle newspaper (I know some of you are astounded by that) then another really good place to get large volumes of newspaper for pots or mulch is your local school. We don't take the paper nor do any of our neighbors so that is where we go when we need large amounts. I try and start at this time of year collecting since the school is out in the summer and I will have more trouble finding them then. Usually one of the teachers will use them for the current events so it's a great place to start with anyways.

Here is the "best" most easily understood directions I found: (Oops I had to remove this --thanks anonymous for the heads up) but I am replacing it with this link: http://www.backwoodshome.com/articles/polachic49.html
from that same link is an origami seed envelope which I have never tried:(also had to remove this one as of 1/05/09) I am replacing it with this instead: Seed envelopes.
Here is another: Newspaper pot 2
Here's another: Newspaper pot 3
More pictures here: Newspaper pot 4

Now I know that you can also use things like toilet paper rolls but I have two problems with those: 1---they aren't big enough when you need to grow out things like tomato seedlings that need to be repotted and repotted. 2--I buy the "triple" roll size rolls. So I would have to save those all year just to get barely enough rolls :-) And when storage is an issue---who wants to. I'd rather just toss them in the compost pile.

By the way---I do own a "soil blocker" as seen here: Peaceful Valley farm and garden
I own the smallest and the medium size. I love them for seed starting when I have the room to set up all my seedling "stuff" (This year my garage is chock full of hay because of our unusual drought and hay issue so all seed starting is in my bed room which has me somewhat limited) I also use them to start things like sweet peas or other seeds that don't "really" need to be sprouted inside but maybe I just want to. I have not invested in the big one yet since except for a few plants I found I just didn't always need that size hence my interest in newspaper pots. I know others swear by it though so maybe someday I will buy one. Unfortunately those are not the things of garage sales---at least not that I have ever seen yet---so new seems the only way to get one.


Cheryl said...

Thanks for the links! I think I'll put the kids to work making the ones in number 4.

farmer, vet and feeder of all animals said...

Hey Cheryl:
Good project for the kids! I am using #4 also but #1 is my choice for some of the heavier plants like the tomatoes and artichokes that I need to pot and re-pot. I will compare and see if it's worth the extra hassle of building the more "complicated" pots. I have never used the other style (the easier ones!)

Uncle Pavian said...

Do you leave the newspaper pots around the plants, or do you take them out when you put them in the ground? The newspaper is supposed to biodegrade, but I've seen differing opinions about whether that happens fast enough.

farmer, vet and feeder of all animals said...

Hello Uncle Pavian
I leave them in the newspaper pot because, yes it does bio-degrade so there for it is good for the plants. However if the soil has shrunk down within the pot and the plant is one that can not be buried lower---tomatoes can but umm....a tree seedling can't.( I had trouble thinking of an example!) then I will rip the top of the pot off or remove the plant. If you leave the top edges exposed they will wick away moisture which is not an issue with a large tomato plant (or other large plant) but is with say a small baby plant.
Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Attention Webmaster:
The Link to Newspaper Pot #1 Takes me to an Adult Dating site.. you may want to investigate.


Rebecca in MI said...

I am researching these for my garden project this spring/summer. I'm glad I saw your blog because I was going to buy a $20 one from the seed company! One thing I wonder though... How does a person water the seeds in the newspaper pots? Seems like watering them would make them break down faster.

trying to live the good life said...

Rebecca ---truthfully though they will leak a bit( sometimes--so use a tray under them) depending on how many sheets you use they don't fall apart. I had asparagus in some (used a few sheets to make them not sure now how many off the top of my head) for almost three months and they were in pretty good shape upon setting out the asparagus. They do hold up better than expected. Good luck :-)