We just got a snowstorm this weekend, so it’s hard to believe we’re already starting to think about our garden, but February is actually an ideal month to start planning and for some plants – start growing.  Most parts of the country have an earlier spring than we do in Colorado, so starting seeds in February makes perfect sense.  For us, who don’t think about putting plants in the ground until Mother’s Day or beginning of June, it can seem a little preposterous to consider.  Starting now is a great time to ensure you have strong, healthy plants that are ready to weather the outdoor environment come spring planting!

However, just because you may be thinking about seeds doesn’t mean you have to spend a TON on fancy seedling planters year after year.  We’re big fans of using items that would otherwise end up in the trash as seedling containers, and most of these can be reused year after year!

Here are 25 ideas for seedling containers that won’t cost you a dime!

  1. Yogurt cups
  2. Toilet Paper Tubes
  3. Egg Cartons (cardboard kind and then you can plant direct in the ground if they’ve broken down enough)
  4. Newspaper pots: These can be made by rolling doubled-up sheets of newspaper around a small jar, then gluing the bottom together with wheat paste, or by folding the paper into a square pot and stapling the edges together. The entire pot can be planted in the ground once the soil is warm and the seedling is mature enough to be put in the ground.
  5. To-Go Paper Cups
  6. Cupcake liners (use cupcake tins to hold them up too!)
  7. Rotisserie Chicken plastic containers (the clear plastic top with a few holes poked in it helps create a greenhouse effect!)
  8. Ice Cream Cones
  9. Plastic Milk Jugs:  Cut the top of the jug off about 2-3 inches from the bottom.  The top can also be used as a greenhouse effect as well!
  10. Old Plastic Ice Cube Trays
  11. Plastic Fruit Containers (like the ones strawberries come in)
  12. To-Go Containers (like from your favorite Chinese take-out)
  13. K-Cups
  14. Sour Cream Containers
  15. 2 Liter Soda Bottles
  16. Plastic pots from small plants you purchased last year
  17. Juice Boxes
  18. Lemon Rind with the very top cut off
  19. Egg Shells
  20. Recycled nursery flats, pots (ask your local nursery – they’ll usually give them to you for free!)