If you have a polytunnel, you may already have started planting seeds for the year ahead. But the seed planting will really start in earnest next month and the month after. Do you have enough containers to plant seeds in, when they can't be planted directly into the ground or a bed in your polytunnel or garden? If not, don't rush out and buy lots of plastic rubbish that you don't need. Rather than contributing to the plastic problem on this planet, consider making your own containers in which to grow your seedlings. Here are five DIY seed planter ideas to get you started down the right track:
Toilet roll tubes are fantastic containers for small seedlings that don't like their roots to be disturbed. Peas, for example, can be grown for shoots, or planted into your polytunnel, complete with the toilet roll tube, when they have grown a little.
Another biodegradable seed planter that can be popped right into the ground with your seedlings are cups made of newspaper or other plain waste paper or card. Simply fold over the bottom to keep in your growing medium and they should hold together well enough to see you through to the time for planting out.
Rather than buying small plastic pots, you could choose to buy small plant fibre pots. But to save money and get a great sense of accomplishment, you could also make your own using plants from your own garden or kitchen waste materials such as coconut fibres. Process the fibre and create your pulp, then leave to dry formed around a small pot you already own, or another small item. These pots are also biodegradable and will hold together well until you do your planting out.
For a quick and easy plant pot that anyone can easily create right now, simply take a plastic pot from your household recycling pile, pierce holes in the bottom to allow for drainage, and use for plants that won't mind being transplanted, or which will have to stay in their containers for longer. Plastic packaging is a problem in the waste stream, but by reusing it rather than buying new plastic items, you will avoid contributing any more to the problem.
Plastic pots are all well and good for seedlings, but nothing beats an old fashioned clay pot. Of course you could buy some, but for an added sense of satisfaction, why not have a go at making some little seed planters yourself? You might even be able to take and use some clay from your own garden, though this will be a process of trial and error and buying in some local clay would be easier. Often, you can pay to fire pots at a local kiln, or you cold experiment with bonfire firing.