By Mindy McIntosh-Shetter
Eggshells are such a wonderful nature created invention.
They provide the perfect protection for the raw egg material inside, which will become either human breakfast or a chicken.
But did you know they can also benefit the garden.
Well, they can and the tips below will help you maximize the use of these amazing little calcium-rich containers.
1. Eggshells in the garden. Crushed eggshells are a great addition to the garden space. They provide calcium to the soil, which is very important when it comes to raising tomatoes. A tomato plant low on its calcium uptake will product bottom rot. To prevent this, add crushed eggshells to the soil. But do not add whole eggshells. While they will release calcium over time, the immediate affect will not be seen. Instead, dry the eggshells in the sun until they easily crack between the fingers. Then crush the eggshells and apply in the spring and through the summer. Do not apply in the fall or winter since plants are dormant and will not use the calcium.
2. Eggshells as starter pots. Eggshells make great containers for starting seeds. To utilize this approach is easy to do and a wonderful way of repurposing materials. One problem though creeps up when using the shells and that is overwatering. To prevent this, just poke a hole in the bottom of each shell and fill with soil. This simple hole will allow water to move out of the shell without losing any soil. When you go to transplant your germinated seeds, make sure to crack the eggshell so that the roots can break through and expand into the new environment.
3. Eggshells as a food for worms. Red worms, which are in many worm composting bins, utilize calcium in their eggs. To supply ones worms with the needed calcium, one will need to dry out the eggshells and then crush them much like the process described in use one.
While eggshells in the garden may seem a little odd, they are free with ones breakfast and easy to use. Just remember to crush them before adding to the soil or feeding them to your worms. So until we blog again, humans are not the only organisms that can benefit from a milk mustache or in this case a mosaic of crushed eggshells.