If you’re in an Easter mood this weekend (or if you have kids, since if you have kids, you probably have to be in an Easter mood!), here’s a fun project that lets you do some gardening while working an egg theme into your project.

Just remember to start this before making those omelettes and pastries because you’ll have lots of egg left over for cooking.

STARTING SEEDS IN EGGSHELLS

First, gather your materials:

- raw eggs (at least six, to fill a 12-egg carton)
- egg carton
- a generous handful of moist seed-starting mix (pre-moisten the seed-starting mix)
- pencil (for poking holes)
- seeds! (see tips below)
- a sharp-edged bowl or jar (this lets you crack eggs with more precision)
- squirt bottle of water

First of all, draw on the egg shells with non-toxic pens – you might as well, since Easter is the only time of the year to do this kind of thing! I doodled flower squiggles on mine, just because I was in the mood, and it greatly enhanced my seed-starting experience.

Crack your eggs in half on that nice, sharp-edged bowl. Plop some moistened seed-starting mix in them and fit them back in the egg carton. Use a sharpened pencil to make holes at the correct depth for the seeds you’re starting (read those seed packets!), and plant your seeds. Use squirt bottle to spray a fine mist of water over (already-dampened) seed mix to settle the seeds. Dampen soil with squirt bottle whenever the surface dries out. Place carton in a warm spot and watch it. As soon as seeds emerge, place in a sunny window. Don’t overdo the watering, as the eggshells obviously don’t have drain holes. When the seedlings are 1-3 inches high, they can be transplanted. I recommend cracking or breaking the eggshell when transplanting into a larger pot or the garden, as the eggshell will take several months to break down in the soil.

TIPS:
With kids, I like to start peas, as the seeds are large, seedlings sprout quickly and you can soon plant the seedlings outdoors at this time of the year, but you can also plant easy flowers like cosmos, zinnias, marigold, morning glory vines and any number of things – or anything that tickles your fancy. Just avoid seeds that need bottom heat, like peppers (unless you have a heating mat) or that are slow (like parsley) or that grow too fast (like sunflowers).

Have fun and happy Easter!