Here are 17 fun and clever vegetable garden hacks to help make your garden more successful this year! These are brilliant! I’ve been staring at our empty garden boxes in the backyard, just itching to buy our vegetable seedlings for the year! I’m counting down the days before the risk of frost is gone, (It’s Canada, so it takes a little longer, eh?) so we can finally start planting!
Start Seedlings from Eggshells
Don’t throw away those used eggshells! Save them up and use them to start your seedlings! They keep those little plastic containers out of the landfill, plus they self compost and add a calcium boost to the soil. Get more details at Squawk Fox.
Use a Wine Bottle to Slowly Water your Plants over Time
Fill an empty wine bottle with water and put it upside down in your pots or garden. The water will slowly trickle out keeping everything moist on hot dry days or if you go away for the weekend. Check out The Greenists for more details.
Put Coffee Filters at the Bottom of Containers to help Keep all the Water from Draining
There is nothing more frustrating than watering a pot, only to have all of the water run right through the holes at the bottom. You can slow down the water drainage by placing a coffee filter at the bottom. Water can still get out, but it will give the soil more time to absorb it. Check out Pop Sugar for more info.
Sprinkle Baking Soda on the Soil to get Sweeter Tomatoes
Make your homegrown tomatoes even sweeter this year by sprinkling baking soda on the soil around the plants. The Gardening Cook gives directions here.
Make your Own Self Cleaning Sharpening Tool Holder
Need a home for your gardening tools? Try this self cleaning and sharpening tool holder from One Good Thing by Jillee.
Make Your Own Seed Tape
Try using toilet paper instead of buying overpriced seed tape. It works just as well and is a fraction of the cost. Seed tape is quick, easy and now totally cheap with the method you can find here.
Protect Your Plants With Milk Jugs
Are you eager to get those plants in the ground before the frost risks are over? No problem! Protect new and fragile plants from frost and bugs with this clever trick from Family Food Secure.
Plant With Pests in Mind
Plant some flowers in your garden to help deter certain pests. Head over to Organic Authority for tips on which plants will help keep your garden pest-free this season.
Make your Own Fertilizer with Kitchen Scraps
Let’s face it, composting isn’t for everyone. But, guess what? You can still make your own compost in small quantities from kitchen scraps. Get the step-by-step directions here.
Use Citrus Peels to Start your Seedlings
Did you know you can also use your leftover lemons after they’ve been squeezed to start your seedlings? Besides being super cute, they self compost and add some extra nutrients to the soil when they are planted. Learn how to use those peels as seed starters here.
Use Plastic Forks to Keep Pets and Animals from Destroying your Garden
I need to try this! Plant plastic forks in the garden to deter rabbits, squirrels and raccoons from raiding your crop. Might look odd, but if it works, it’s totally worth it! Get the details here.
The Miracle of Epsom Salt
Adding Epsom Salt to your garden increases the nutrient absorption of plants and improves seed germination. Natural Living Ideas has even more details on what Epsom Salts can do for your garden.
Check Your Grocery Bag for Crops
Fresh basil, celery and onions can all be started from cuttings you’d normally throw away. Set them in some water and they’ll start to grow all over again! Find out which vegetables you can re-grow over at The Organic Lemon.
Grow Heart or Star Shaped Fruit
Okay, this one is just for fun – but you can actually buy molds that will let you grow star or heart shaped cucumber, tomatoes or other small to medium sized vegetables! You can get the molds at Amazon or from the British website Suttons Seeds.
Keep Those Instructions Handy
You know those plant tags you throw into the shed because you know you should save them, but you aren’t exactly sure what to do with them? Put them on a key ring to keep them organized! Get more clever ideas over here.
Plant a Water Bottle with Holes in it to Slowly Water the Plants
This is brilliant! If your plants dry up quickly in the harsh sun, poke a bunch of holes in a water bottle and plant it next to your plant. Then you can easily fill the water bottle which will slowly release the water into the soil. This is an easy way to get water all the way down to the roots! Visit The Gardening Nook for more instructions.
Put Those Melons in a Sling
The bigger and heavier melons get as they grow, the more likely they are to break from the vine before they are ripe. Give them a bit of support by making a sling out of an old t-shirt to reduce the strain on the vine. Make your own melon sling with directions from The Vegetable Gardner.