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Today was a great day; this morning I woke up and finished a great book I’ve been devouring for the past few days, “Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend” by Matthew Dicks, went for a short walk, and the best part of today? Assembled my light garden and planted some seeds! They are now sitting nicely under the light, and hopefully lots of germinating magic is happening.

The first thing to do was put together the light garden. This was supposed to be the easy part, just screwing pieces together right? Wrong! It took me over an hour to get it together; mostly because the screws that connect the base to the side arms are not long enough; they’re the screws that come with it, but they don’t work well. When inserted under the base piece they don’t reach into the screw socket on the side leg, and when inserted first into the side leg, the base piece won’t stay on. On one of the legs, I was somehow able to tighten it up, but have no idea how. The second base piece had to be taped to the side leg.  It’s also difficult to get the light brackets in place, and then once in place to get them to stay. There’s a connector piece between the two lights that needs to be inserted just so into the sockets, and then pushed in hard. This is difficult to do. So assembling the light garden was frustrating and far more difficult than it should have been.

But! Planting seeds made it all better.  About a week or ago or so I found an article for seed-starting that used eggshells to hold the seeds, and thought this was a brilliant idea! When the seedlings are ready for transplanting, the shells are carefully cracked and then planted in the pot, and as the shell breaks down, it provides calcium to the plants. Genius! The article, with steps outlined nicely can be found here.

Since reading the article, I’ve been saving my eggshells, making sure to break them on the top instead of cracking them on the side as I normally do.  Here are the shells, washed out and cleaned with hot water.

Next was time to make drainage holes on the bottoms of the shells. This was a little difficult with the darker eggshells, as they were thicker. I did have to make the hole, wedge it bigger, and then use tweezers to pull out the protein skin to make sure the drainage worked properly.

Now to ready the soil. This is the germinating mix from Gardener’s Supply Co. It needs to be moistened before using; I also added a little bit of sea kelp to the soil.

germinating mix

And next was adding the soil to the eggcups along with the seeds!  As I only had 6 eggs, I wanted a different seed in each cup.  From the top left across and then down and back across is onion, brandywine tomato, cherry tomato, basil, strawberry, and then spinach.

The seeds needed a cover to act as a bit of greenhouse and there’s no plastic wrap left in the house. So I cut the bottom off a plastic strawberry container (which already has vents cut into it!), cut off a bit of another egg carton to place on the open side of my eggcups (the plastic lid would’ve hung too far off the right side and  allowed to much moisture to escape. Along the same idea, I also stuffed paper towels into the empty egg carton.)

And then to place the seeds under the lights! (The lights are further down now; they were just up a bit for the photo)

I’m excited to see how this seed-starting adventure goes, and really hoping the results are great and that I’ll have some tasty food this summer.