February can be a difficult month–spring still seems like only a dream, and where I live there is almost constant inversion. One great thing to do this month is to plan a garden. Seeds for cool-weather plants can go into the ground mid-March, and some (peas and spinach) can go in even earlier. And if you have a sunny window, or if your neighbor lets you use hers, you can plant seeds for warmer months right now.
Here is a neat trick that I learned from a very wise woman in my neighborhood. Instead of buying planting trays to do your starts, you can make them very easily out of newspaper and a bit of tape.
I tear the newspaper into strips (a full spread would be torn into 4 strips, with each strip folded in half lengthwise). Just wrap the newspaper around any cylinder, around 3 inches diameter. I use a short length of PVC pipe. Leave a couple inches of newspaper hanging beyond the cylinder.
After it’s wrapped, fold the overhanging newspaper so that it forms the bottom of the little planter cup.
Use a bit of tape to secure it.
You can make these pretty quickly. I made these while my daughter watched cartoons. Superbowl half-time activity?
When you’re ready to plant seeds, fill each cup with potting soil, plant your seed, and place the newspaper planters on any kind of plastic or metal tray.
Keep the soil moist. If you see the newspapers dry, you’ll know your little babies need more water.
I’ve ordered my seeds, made my garden plans, and can’t wait to begin planting!