Wednesday

DIY Seed Paper - A Unique Way To Sprout Seeds

It is spring and I have been thinking a lot about gardening. I love gardening and my kids love getting their hands dirty. It is a win-win activity for all. But I have one little problem, I live in an apartment and we have very little room for such activities. That just means I have to get creative and this year I decided to trying sprouting seeds using seed paper.

The thing I have loved most about using the seed paper is how clean it is.
We generally do seed sprouts using potting soil in egg cartons but they always get knocked over and I am vacuuming up soil. The process of making the paper pulp is a little messy, but tons of fun, and once the paper is made there isn't much mess.

Another great benefit for the seed paper is you are reusing junk, in my case cereal boxes. But you could just as easily use any old scrap paper. I love turning old junk into something new and fun.

My kids had so much fun watering and watching these grow. Once again, because there is no dirt the kids couldn't drown them and wash all the dirt away. If there was too much water, just poor off the excess.

These would make cute gifts as well. You could use fun-shaped molds or cookie cutters instead of the muffin tins. You could even write something on the flat side. Also, if you use white scrap paper instead of cereal boxes they would turn out whiter than the grey/brown of mine. I am always looking for nature-inspired gifts or gifts that encourage kids and families to get outdoors.

Materials

  • cereal boxes or any scrap paper
  • water
  • large bowl or bin
  • blender - I only have an immersion blender but a counter-top blender would word better
  • muffin tin
  • seeds - All of the seed type sprouted but some did sprout better than others. 
  • towel

Directions

  1. Tear cereal boxes up into small pieces and place them in the large bowl. 
  2. Cover the box pieces with water and allow to soak overnight. 
  3. Blend up the wet boxes in your blender to make a pulp and return to the large bowl if using a counter-top blender. 
  4. Pull out a small handful of pulp and squeeze out most of the water. If you squeeze out too much of the water you won't be able to easily spread the pulp in the muffin tins. 
  5. Place a handful of pulp into bottom into each of the spaces in the muffin tin. 
  6. Sprinkle seeds over the pulp. 
  7. Place a little more pulp over the seeds. 
  8. Use a towel soak up and press out as much of the water as you can. 
  9. This next step is very important is you are planning on giving these as gifts. You have to dry out the paper before the seed start to sprout. I just placed the muffin tin under a ceiling fan on high. If you aren't giving them as gifts, just dry them out enough to remove the paper from the tins.
  10. To sprout, place paper on a plate or other water-proof surface and water. 
  11. To plant, carefully pull separate sprouts, keeping them on the paper and plant them according to the directions on the seed packages. 
This is a fun and easy way to get your kids involved in gardening. 

How are you getting your kids involved in gardening this spring?

For other creative ideas on playing with junk, check out Best Toys 4 Toddlers and her 60 Day Junk Play Challenge.

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