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Gardener explains why you should never throw out egg cartons, gallon jugs: 'No more struggling through cold spring nights'

"My kids are already getting sick of me saving containers."

"My kids are already getting sick of me saving containers."

Photo Credit: Instagram

We've all heard these three R's of waste management: Reduce, reuse, and recycle. Not only is this better for the planet, but it also keeps more money in your pocket. 

You can easily practice this in your garden with a simple hack gardener James Prigioni (@jamesprigioni) shared on Instagram, showing people how to transform ordinary household items into small planters and even greenhouses. 

The scoop 

In the video, James shared four garden hacks to ensure your plants reach their full potential. 

For the first hack, he showed viewers how to use empty egg cartons to create a "mini greenhouse" for plants. 

Cut a few holes at the bottom of each egg holder, add dirt or compost, and plant whatever you like. If you need ideas, James planted tomatoes and eggplants in his carton. "Now those are some happy-looking seedlings — I see big production in their future," he says, showing off his plants after they'd started sprouting. 

Next, he shares how you can use an empty gallon jug to make a "private greenhouse" for one plant. Simply cut the bottom off the jug and place it over young plants, trapping the sun's energy inside and keeping them warm throughout the winter. To keep the jug in place, James pushed mulch around the base. 

"No more struggling through cold spring nights," he says in the video as he pulls the jug off a flourishing tomato plant. 

For the third hack, he shows how gardeners can reuse plastic Solo cups as small planters. Like the egg cartons, you should cut a few drainage holes in the bottom, add soil, and plant your seeds. He points out that Solo cups are taller than the typical four-inch pot, allowing the roots to spread out more. 

Finally, James demonstrates how to use a small glass cup to soak seeds — in this case, he used spinach seeds. After mixing them with your finger in the glass, let them soak for a day and drain the excess water in a strainer. Then, you're ready to plant the seeds. 

How it's helping

Even if you don't consider yourself very plant-savvy, you can still use this hack to grow something small, like basil, dill, or cilantro. Whatever you decide to plant, you'll save time and money on weekly shopping. 

Having a garden also helps you get exercise and eat healthier. Not to mention, it's great for the planet since growing your own food reduces planet-warming pollution from the transportation and packaging of globally shipped produce. 

If you grow 300 pounds of food, for example, you'll slash your pollution footprint by 50 pounds of carbon per year. 

These hacks also help you get more use out of items before they're recycled or end up in a landfill. Plus, reusing materials eliminates the need to buy other supplies, which helps your wallet and the planet. 

What everyone's saying

"My kids are already getting sick of me saving containers and it's not even spring!" one person said, adding a laughing emoji.

"I love this!! Keep em coming!" another added.

"I like to use gallon jugs to protect my sunflower and squash seeds from squirrels!" someone else shared.

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