Sunday, March 10, 2013

Making Seed Starting Pots Using Loofah Sponge

Lettuce Sprouts in Loofah Sponge Pots

This has been one of the most exciting garden experiments EVER! I have to give total credit to Mr. Garden, (husband Bryan) for his awesome "Out of the Box" thinking skills! Not only are we finding a successful earth friendly seedling pot, we are growing them ourselves as well. 

I had so much fun growing Loofah last summer. They were quite beautiful in the garden too! They proved to be a vigorous source of shade growing over the trellis keeping the soil cooler underneath. 


 Loofah on trellis in June

Once June arrived the Loofah came into full production by blooming profusely with exotic yellow flowers. This gave refuge for heirloom melon vines to grow below and on out into the rest of this part of the garden.

With the success of nice big baskets of harvested and dried Loofahs I began searching further for more alternative uses for them other than the luxurious sponge they make in the bath. I found all kind of artsy things that folks were making with them, from slippers to adding them to homemade bath soaps. 

  Our first Loofah Pots

It wasn't until December was ending and the quest for a more sustainable seedling pot was weighing heavily on my thoughts that this experiment first began. Although we've always been keen about recycling used plastic pots, the resources for them are not always available. We of course refuse to buy them new since plastic contributes an outlandish amount of trash to landfills that simply does not decompose.

I experimented earlier in the summer with making seedling pots out of toilet paper tubes. That worked just fine and was a great way to recycle them. Although I find such things can be simply composted as well, it does take the stress factor out of unnecessary consumerism.

But for a person seeking true sustainability, how could I possibly resist our homegrown Loofah Sponge revelation. 

Since each gourd contained tons of seeds I was able to save enough of them to grow some serious quantities of Loofah this summer. This should prove to provide me with loads of seedling pots at the end of the growing season. I may need to discuss the need for more greenhouses with Mr. Garden! :))

Happy Gardening!!
Pammy











9 comments:

  1. lol I was wondering what you were going to do with all those loofas.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hehe...we must grow more loofahs so we can grow more loofahs :))

      Delete
  2. So - do you just plant the whole thing and let the loofah biodegrade, or do you turn out the seedling and reuse the loofah?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Cher! We just plant the whole thing much like you would a peat pot. By the time the seedling is ready to go in the ground the loofah is quite loose in form and the seedlings roots are beginning to grow out of it...so planting is a breeze

      Delete
  3. The two of you are genius'! I'm growing them this year and I will for sure try this!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awesome Debi! I placed mine in a flat with a little water to help keep them moist until they were ready to transplant. It helped, especially when to busy to pamper ;))

      Delete
  4. So did I understand that planting thyme give you loofah?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not sure of your question Sherry, but I know if you plant loofah seeds at the right thyme you will get loofahs ;))

      Delete
  5. How do you de-flesh all those loofahs? What is your technique?

    ReplyDelete