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Biodegradable Pots

biodegradable seed-starting pots made from rolled newspaper. Here, shown with a PotMaker½ (made by Richters), an item that with a twist of the wrist forms a perfect little pot Biodegradable pots, made of pressed peat or home-made from newspaper, are very suited to starting seedlings, especially those that resent transplantation. Since seedlings are buried pot and all, no root disturbance takes place, and thus there is no shock to the young plant, no temporary set-back in growth.

Thin, flat peat 'pellets' are popular variations on standard peat pots: the addition of water causes them to expand, after which individual seeds may be planted into them. Again, they are planted, seedling and all, at the proper time of transplantation.

Illustrated are home-made pots made of a double layer of plain, black-and-white newsprint - coloured newsprint may contain toxins you don't want your tomatoes exposed to. While the photo shows a simple wooden 'Potmaker', people have rolled them successfully by hand, have used empty tomato paste cans as forms, etc.

One final note: when transplanting seedlings grown in this manner, ensure that the edges of the pot are completely buried. If exposed to the air, these free edges can wick away and evaporate significant amounts of moisture from the young plant.

tomato seedlings under fluorescent lights

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