How To Raise Seedlings and Save!

From The Eco Urban Sustainability Video Newsletter!


Basil seedlings Raised & reared underneath a Tomato!
How to raise seedlings and save money is a question that is asked by many a gardener.   Who among us who  get our fingers down in the dirt doesn’t want to reduce costs?    Half the fun of gardening is saving money, don’t you think? 

There are many ways we can save money in the garden.  We can do it by recycling.  We can do it by creating our own fertilizers instead of buying them.  Also, we can collect seeds from our own plants and then raise even more plants.    And we can do this last for only a few cents!

If you don’t have any plants as of yet to collect seed from, then you will need purchase some.   Or you can buy seedlings from your local nursery or garden centre.

Link to fanpage

The Benefit of Raising Seedlings at Home!

How To Get Started With Salad Seedlings!

How to Store and Raise Tomatoes from Seed

Providing an Early Start for Your Seedlings.

  • Providing a head start in early spring for your seedlings is advisable.   It means you have fresh produce, either plants or flowers,  that produce much quicker.
  • One way to do this is to place your seed trays on top of your water heater before they sprout.    Yep,  kick the cat off, and place your seed tray there.  At this stage those seeds don’t need light,  and the water heater works exactly the same a heat –mat.     Saves you money!
  • Raise your seedling in a plastic bag mini greenhouse.  Place your seed tray,  after planting  and watering, in a clear plastic bag and tie it off.  This creates humidity and warmth.   It’ll  give your beloved seedlings a great start.   If you want to grow them in the bag mini greenhouse,  then bend some wire so it is shaped like an igloo or small tent.  You can keep them  in there until they reach the top.  But you must prick some holes in the bag to let air circulate.
  • Create a mini greenhouse from a plastic bottle or yogurt container.  This system works great.  But please remember to prick holes in the container for drainage.  Also,  once the plant has sprouted,  open the top to let air circulate.

Money Saving Tips

The mission here is how to raise seedlings and save,  so I have provided some money saving tips below as well as advice on how to give your seedlings a great head start. 

  1. Share seeds amongst friends and communities to create a Seed Saving Bank.  Always collect seed from your best producers, that are your most productive plants.
  2. Raise your seedling in recycled containers such as ice-cream, butter, margarine, milk containers, second hand pots etc.   Just make sure you place adequate drainage holes in them.
  3. Look for second hand pots at the junkyard, industrial tip, or when there’s a council throw out.    You be surprised how many are tossed out.   But always wash and sterilize before using old containers.
  4. Keep an eye out for containers that can be used from second hand stores.  Seedlings can be sprouted in anything as long as it has drainage.



Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.