Winter Sowing Seeds in Milk Jugs

Winter sowing allows me to get back into my gardening groove before the weather truly lets me. After the holidays are over, I start getting the gardening itch.

Winter Sowing is also a much more frugal way to start seeds. No need to buy all that seed starting equipment such as heat mats, grow lights, plant trays, etc.

Just save your used milk jugs or other plastic containers, and then the only thing you need to acquire is the potting soil to grow in, and the seeds!

Poke a bunch of holes in the bottom for drainage,  and a few holes around the top for extra air circulation.

Prepare Your Container

Then you cut the milk jug almost all the way around about 4" up from the bottom, but leaving an inch or so intact below the handle, as a hinge, so that you can lift the upper part of the jug open.

The most important aspect of the soil you choose to use, is to use a soil that drains well. If the soil stays too wet, the seeds may rot. I would not choose the moisture control potting soil unless you live in a very dry climate.

1. Fill the bottom part of the jug with 3" of damp potting soil.  2. Plant the seeds into the soil as directed on the package for depth of planting.   3. Spray the surface with water so the top 1" or so of soil is quite damp. 4. Close the jug and tape the jug closed all the way around.

5. Be sure to put a label inside the jug, as any writing on the outside is likely to fade over time. 6. Be sure to open the jug on any really warm days in the spring so your seedlings don't cook!

When your seedlings have grown a bit in the spring, open the tops up and let them harden off this way for a week or so before transplanting them!

Make sure to grab our Winter Sowing Schedule for Garden Zone 8B in the Pacific Northwest!

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