Gardening with Eggshells

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How to Use Egg Shells in the Garden-Learn the different ways you can use your egg shells to benefit your garden plants! The Reid Homestead
How to Use Egg Shells in the Garden-Learn the different ways you can use your egg shells to benefit your garden plants! The Reid Homestead
How to Use Egg Shells in the Garden-Learn the different ways you can use your egg shells to benefit your garden plants! The Reid Homestead
How to Use Egg Shells in the Garden-Learn the different ways you can use your egg shells to benefit your garden plants! The Reid Homestead

This article will share with you why and how to use eggshells in the garden to improve your soil and benefit your plants!

Have you ever wondered how to use eggshells in the garden? Most homesteaders have chickens and a vegetable garden. And most homesteaders like to utilize everything they have on hand. So in this article I will explain a couple of different ways of how I use eggshells in the garden.

This time of year, I start saving eggshells in preparation for using them when I plant my tomato seedlings and pepper seedlings. In order to use them, there are a couple of things I do to them first.

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Baking Eggshells to Prep them for Use in the Garden

baking sheet full of eggshells
Place your egg shells on a cookie sheet in a single layer

Baking the eggshells helps to dry them out fully, especially the membrane inside the egg. Drying out the membrane, allows you to crush up the eggs more easily. I place the eggs on a cookie sheet, and put them in the oven on low, around 250-275 degrees, for about an hour. After they have been in for an hour or so, pull them out and let them cool.

Crushing Eggshells for Use in the Garden

You can throw the eggshells in a blender at this point and it will grind them into a fine dust super quickly. I prefer to just mash the eggshells with a large wide spoon. It is actually quite satisfying to do this. Something about the sound, I don’t know! I just really enjoy it.

Once you’ve gotten them broken down into smaller bits, then mound the pile of bits up, and continue mashing them down with the spoon until they are all around the same consistent size. I then store them in a quart size mason jar until I am ready to use them.

Another great thing you can do with these crushed up eggshells, is feed them back to your chickens in place of oyster shell. It increases their calcium intake to make for nice hard eggshells! Funny how that works. Circle of life I suppose. 🙂

eggshells on baking sheet being smashed with a large spoon for use in the garden
Use a large flat serving spoon to begin crushing the eggs after they have baked in the oven
eggshells for use in the garden, being smashed into tiny bits, on baking sheet with large spoon
Once you have crushed them, mound them up and crush them again to get the pieces even smaller.
pile of smashed eggshells into tiny bits for use in the garden, in a pile on a cookie sheet with large spoon
This is what you are aiming for, small enough to measure out in a tablespoon, but you could go even smaller if you like.


How to Use Eggshells in the Garden

I use the eggshells when I am planting my peppers and tomatoes into their final pots that they will live in for the summer. I will add 1 heaping TBSN of the eggshells along with 1 TBSN of Epsom salts, into the hole I have dug in the pot, or in the ground.  Stir them around a bit, than plant your tomato or pepper plant.

The eggshells will add extra calcium into the soil, which can help prevent blossom end rot. Epsom salts add extra magnesium. I have heard mixed reviews on using eggshells to deter snails and slugs. I prefer to use Sluggo for that. Another easier way to use your eggshells, is to just throw them in your compost. That way when you use the compost in the garden later, that calcium will be added to your soil.

large mason jar storing smashed eggshells for use in the garden
Once I finish smashing the egg shells, I use a canning funnel to pour them into a canning jar for storage until I am ready to use them.

Make your Own Fertilizer with Eggshells

To make fertilizer with your eggshells, it is best to have them as fine as possible. Then add the crushed eggshells to warm water and let sit out in the sun for a bit. The warm water will leach out some of the calcium from the eggs.

Add some epsom salts to this solution and a little fish emulsion fertilizer, and you have a great spray on fertilizer. Use this once a month to give your plants an extra boost of goodness. If none of the above ideas appeal to you, at the very least, throw those eggshells in the compost! As you can see, there are lots of ways to use eggshells in the garden!


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How to Use Egg Shells in the Garden-Learn the different ways you can use your egg shells to benefit your garden plants and improve your garden soil! The Reid Homestead #gardeninghacks #DIYGardenproject #eggs #gardeningideas #eggshells #gardening

8 COMMENTS

  1. Amanda | 12th Mar 18

    Thanks for sharing! I am newer to gardening and had no idea this was a thing! I am going to try it out this spring 🙂

    • Tamara | 12th Mar 18

      Hi Amanda! Thanks for stopping by! I am always happy to answer any gardening questions should you have any! 🙂

  2. Sheila | 15th Mar 18

    Another use for the prepared eggshells is to sprinkle them on the ground for birds. It sounds a little creepy, but they need the calcium for egg production.

    • Tamara | 15th Mar 18

      Hi Sheila! Yes! You are correct! I mentioned feeding them to my chickens for that reason. But I suppose wild birds would benefit too! Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Jason | 24th Mar 18

    This works so well! I had 85% plus tomato and pepper success rate last summer in preventing B.E.R. I start collecting shells art Christmas. Put in garage they are dry and brittle after a few weeks.

    • Tamara | 24th Mar 18

      Hi Jason! Glad to hear that it works well for someone else! Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Tommy | 27th Mar 18

    It seems a bit like a waste of energy to put them in the oven. I use grinded eggshells in the garden too, but the process works fine without the oven.

    • Tamara | 28th Mar 18

      Hi Tommy, Yes, the oven is an extra step. If you don’t mind waiting for the egg shells to dry out naturally, or, if you don’t mind larger pieces of shell in the garden, than there is no need to use the oven. I find that if the egg shells aren’t dried out thoroughly, and you want to grind them into small bits, that tough membrane can be rubbery and inhibit breaking them into tiny pieces. Placing them in the oven for a bit just helps to dry them out quickly, but it is totally optional!

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