I get so excited when it’s gardening time. Ever since I decided a few years ago that I wanted to take a stab at gardening, I’ve started getting excited about it earlier each year and subsequently allowed my garden to take over more of my back yard. First I built an elevated garden in the back of the yard a few years ago. Then I added a separate squash and zucchini satellite garden last year. This spring, Garden II has expanded to include all elliptical produce (meaning I added cucumbers over there too) and I’m thinking of claiming a flower garden for my broccoli (Garden III).

This love of gardening and my ever-expanding arsenal of crops means that I need a good way to identify my plants and a good way to start them.

sustainablog.org

One of Sustainablog’s 5 DIY indoor gardening projects is to use a phonebook as a seedbed. They’re biodegradable, they’ll help your seedlings grow straight, and — best of all — no matter how much you wish otherwise, someone is going to bring you a new one every year!

So how do you remember what you planted? Sure, if I wait long enough, I’ll be able to figure out which ones are the tomatoes and which ones are the spinach, but TreeHugger has put together a tutorial on using old drink cups to make plant tags. And while it doesn’t have the legitimacy of an accompanying online tutorial, I also use old plastic drink cups — bottoms cut off — to protect my seedlings from birds. The rabbits in my yard are either too polite or too dumb to go eat the things in my garden, but I’ve found that my neighborhood birds see seedlings and think “I should pluck that.” So by placing a drink cup upside down with the bottom cut out, the little guys can get their sun and water while also being shielded from the birds.

It’s not too late to plant your garden, so grab your empty fast food cups and phonebook and get started!