Natural seed starters

Growing plants in eggshells

Community Playthings | May 2022

Get a head start on your garden this year by starting some seeds inside on your sunny windowsill. Using eggshells for your seed-starting planters has a bunch of benefits, plus it's just a really fun project for kids.

Materials needed

  • eggs
  • egg carton
  • potting soil
  • seeds
  • spray bottle for water


1. Crack the eggs as close to the pointy end as possible, leaving at least two-thirds intact. Empty the contents into a bowl and save for breakfast! Clean the shells well by washing with soapy water or boiling in a pot of water for a few minutes to kill any possible bacteria.

Empty eggshells getting washed in soapy water

2. Fill each shell with dampened potting soil and place back in the egg carton.

Spooning dirt into empty eggshell

3. Follow specific instructions on the back of the seed packet for planting the seeds. Be sure to label each eggshell with the correct plant! Germination time depends on the type of seed, but typically you should see the first sprouts appear in a little more than a week. (Carrots can take up to 3 weeks.)

Planting seeds into eggshells full of dirt

4. Place the egg carton on a sunny, warm windowsill.

Eggshells pots with sprouting seedlings

5. Check the moisture of the soil daily and water, if necessary, using a spray bottle. The soil should be kept moist, but be careful not to over-water.

Watering seedlings growing in eggshell pots on windowsill

6. Transplant your seedlings outdoors when they have developed their second or third set of leaves and the outdoor temperatures are safe for planting.

holding eggshell pot with sprouting seedling

7. Gently crush the eggshell, so the roots will be able to expand, and then place it directly into the earth. The shell will eventually biodegrade, adding nutrients to the soil.

Covering eggshell pots with earth

8. Continue to nurture your plants and in a couple of months you could have a harvest!

Boy with blue hat pulling carrots out of dirt

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