10 Pro Steps | How To Grow Tomato Seeds In Egg Cartons?

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Growing tomatoes in your own garden are super easy and hassle-free. Will you just bring small tomato plants from a nursery or get some seeds to germinate?

Which option seems convenient?

Well, growing tomatoes from seeds mean you have options to choose different varieties, sizes, and colors. If you grow them in recycled cardboard egg cartons or plastic egg cartons, it will be economical too—all you need to follow the perfect method to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons.

How to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons?

To grow tomato seeds in egg cartons, first of all, prepare egg cartons to make them ready for pouring out potting soil or a soilless starting mix. After that, plant 2-3 tomato seeds in each cell of the egg carton and slightly water the soil. Let it grow until they become 2-3 inches and transplant each of them in a big pot.

How To Grow Tomato Seeds In Egg Cartons? Step By Step Guide

Several steps you need to follow when you want to know how to start tomato seeds indoors in egg cartons. Here we are mentioning how to plant tomato seeds in egg cartons in step-by-steps.

Step 1 – Collect All The Essential Things

Before growing tomato seeds in egg cartons, you want to collect all the essential things you need. Here are the lists of things you will need for growing tomato seeds in egg cartons.

No Things You Will Need
1 Types of tomatoes seeds you want to grow
2 Potting soil or a soilless starting mix
3 Recycled or plastic or any seed trays or pots
4 Spray bottle
5 Plant marker to identify varieties

Step 2 – Find out The Average Last Frost Date

Planting tomato seeds at the best time ensures the quickest and healthiest growth. That’s why you need to find out the average last frost date in your particular location and plant it before passing a few weeks of the ended frost date.

According to most garden experts, it will be most probably 4-6 weeks. For example, you start growing tomato seeds in egg cartons four weeks before the last date of frost. Then, your tomato seeds should be ready to transplant after passing two weeks of the previous frost date.

Step 3 – Fill Each Cell of Egg Cartons with Your Preferred Soil

Fill Each Cell of Egg Cartons with Your Preferred Soil

So, you now know the perfect time to plant tomato seeds in egg cartons. Now, you want to keep ready the egg cartons where you will grow the seeds.

Tomatoes thrive well in most soil time. However, Potting soil or a soilless starting mix would be the best option for egg cartons as there is limited space. You want to add the best healthy soils for their optimal growth during these 4-6 weeks.

Fill each cell of egg cartons with your preferred soil and slightly pressure them to eliminate air under the soil surface. However, avoid making the soil compact as it prevents plant roots from spreading freely.

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Make a flat smooth level for each cell of the egg carton. Avoid filling out each cell thoroughly with the soil. Keep a half inch or one inch empty if your egg cartons are small in size.

However, a 2-3 inches option will be better to grow them more easily. You will also keep them in the egg cartons for 2-3 weeks more than small egg cartons.

Step 4 – Sow Seeds Appropriately on The Egg Cartons

Sow Seeds Appropriately on The Egg Cartons

We have already gone this far in this process of how to grow tomato seeds indoors in egg cartons. Our next job is sowing seeds appropriately on the egg cartons.

Take out some tomato seeds from the seed bag and take them into your hand. It is best to plant 2-3 seeds in each cell of egg cartons to ensure the maximum growth of tomato seeds. Ensure to keep an equal distance from one seed to another so they don’t jam up.

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Now, gently pour a small amount of soil on each cell without pressuring the soil surface. Gently level the surface.

Step 5 – Water The Seeds Appropriately

How to water the tomato seeds in egg cartons

As part of how to plant tomato seeds in egg cartons, you have already sown the seeds. Now, you want to water the seeds appropriately.

A spray bottle is preferable to water the seeds as you don’t want to overwater the soil. Make the soil moist by spraying few times for each cell.

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If you have sown different types of tomato varieties, use markers for easy identification when they grow.

Step 6 – Maintain The Temperature

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So, we have already sown and water our seeds for growing tomato plants in egg cartons. Now, keep them in a humid and warm temperature with at least 60 degrees.

For best germination, try to keep them in an 80-degree temperature environment. If you are in low-temperature weather, keeping them outside is not suitable. Additionally, tomato seeds don’t require direct sunlight until they pass 1-2 weeks.

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In that case, it would be better to use a heat mat to make the soil surface proper warm. Every day check out the egg cartons once to twice. And, if the soil becomes dry, spray them water without making them soggy.

Wait for 1-2 weeks until the germination for the plants occurs. You will notice tiny seedlings from the soil surface are coming out.

Step 7 – Use Artificial Light Such as Grow Light

Now, the tiny small-sized plants need a sufficient amount of sunlight to grow fast. If sunshine is unavailable, you can use artificial light such as grow light.

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Try to keep only 2-3 inches distance when using grow light. If you want to keep egg cartons close to a window, make sure to place them in a direction where more light enter. Additionally, you want to rotate the carton every few days so that each area gets enough sunlight.

You can choose any of the grow lights listed in the article.

Read More – Best LED Grow Lights

Step 8 – Tiny Tomato Plants Need Regular Maintenance

Do you think your job of growing tomato plants in egg cartons has finished? You get all the answers to how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons?

No!

Tiny tomato plants need regular maintenance —in fact, every day.

Here are the few maintenance points you want to note:

  • As you ensure a hot temperature for the tomato soil, it is common for your tomato plants to need frequent watering. 1-2 times water is enough for these young plants.
  • Use a small watering pot if they become relatively long.
  • Ensure you don’t keep the plants in excessive heat temperature.
  • The temperatures should not rise above 95°F.
  • If the plants become too hot, you can use a cooling fan to cool them for a few minutes.

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Step 9 – Adequate Space is Required to Grow Appropriately

As you have planted 2-3 seeds for each cell, you may see 2-3 tomato plants coming from each of them. In that case, they will need adequate space to grow appropriately.

You can either thin them or remove the weaker one from each cell. However, if you want, you can also re-pot them in this condition. Use a pair of scissors to cut the stems of a particular part of tomato plants.

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However, you don’t need to cut any of them if you think they are not overcrowded. You can re-pot each plant if they are healthy and strong.

As they are delicate due to their size, they need special care while transplanting them in bigger pots. Make sure you keep plants harm-free while re-potting them.

Step 10 – Keep The Root Harm-free

So, we have finally come on to the last step of growing tomato plants in egg cartons. You will now transplant them in bigger containers once you see 3-4 leaves coming out from each plant.

This step needs careful attention as you want to keep the root harm-free. Here you have two options to follow.

First, you want to ensure whether your carton is biodegradable or not.

If your egg carton is biodegradable, you cut each cell separately. Then place the cell along with the plant on the bigger pot. Make sure to level the surface of each cell to make perfect adjustments with the new pot.

On the other hand, if your egg carton is non-biodegradable, you will have to separate the egg carton plants. In that case, you can use a widger or spoon to detach the plant roots from the surface.

Reach as depth as possible to prevent harming the root plant. If each cell has several tomato plants, remove them separately. Avoid scraping two plants at a time as you may damage the plant roots.

Now, hold the root ball on your hands carefully and avoid holding the root or stems. Then, immediately plant them one by one on the bigger pot.

How Many Young Tomato Plants Should You Plant on Each Pot?

If the plant is pretty extensive, you can grow 2-3 plants. However, 1-2 plants are perfect if the plant is relatively small. As tomatoes plants’ growth depends on their varieties, planting only one plant is ideal if you think they grow more than other varieties. After all, you want to ensure the best possible growth for them.

What is Hardening Off Tomato Plants before Transplanting?

After knowing how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons, you also want to how to take care of them while keeping them in the pot. Once you grow the young plants on bigger containers, it is time to harden them off.

So, what is hardening off for tomato plants?

Hardening off for tomato plants means, you ensure the appropriate natural conditions for tomatoes to grow more freely, and they become compatible with different environmental and temperature conditions. Additionally, their leaves start to grow thicker and stronger. Their roots also grow fast.

what is hardening off for tomato plants

Instant of introducing your plant to new weather or temperature for a prolonged time, give a short time every day to adjust and prepare them to withstand that conditions. If you immediately introduce a new environment for a long time, they may struggle to adjust. Also, they may become sick and get affected by diseases.

You can have detailed knowledge from the following research article – Plant Temperature Sensors

Slow introducing is better than long introducing. Gradually, increase their time for keeping them outside. Notice how they react by checking out their leaves and other body parts. When you practice it for a few weeks, they will ultimately fit for the final transplant on your garden.

Here are the bonus tips you can follow to hardening them off appropriately.

  • Let your plants have a period of 7 to 14 days before switching over.
  • Initially, keep the tomato plants to a partially shaded or fully shaded spot to harden off them.
  • Increase the time of the hardening process gradually and keep them long time outside.
  • Don’t let the heavy wind pass your plants in the first week.
  • During the hardening off process, water your plants as little as possible, but avoid making them excessively dry.
  • Choose a weather condition for the hardening off process when the temperatures are higher than 50°F.
  • Avoid fertilizing the tomato plants during the hardening-off process.

If you are getting it in snippet then let us tell you that we have discussed how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons in the beginning.

What Is The Ideal Temperature to Transplant Tomato Plants Into The Garden Soil?

What is the ideal temperature to transplant tomato plants into the garden soil?

It is best to transplant tomato plants only when the soil has a minimum temperature of 60°F. Otherwise, you want to wait. You can use a soil thermometer to check the current temperature of your garden soil.

What Is The Ideal Temperature to Transplant Tomato Plants Into The Garden Soil?

So you already know how to plant tomato seeds in cardboard egg cartons, how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons, and the process of hardening off tomato plants. Once the hardening-off process is completed, your tomato plants are ready for transplant. The best time to transplant tomato plants to your garden is passing two weeks of the last frost date.

You can have detailed knowledge from the following research article – Effect of transplant growth stage on tomato productivity.

However, here is another thing you should have taken into account. Tomato plants always thrive in warm soil. Unless the soil is warm enough, you don’t want to transplant them.

If you are getting it in snippet then let us tell you that we have discussed how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons in the beginning.

How To Transplant Tomato Plants To The Garden?

Before starting the transplant process, make sure you water the soil surface appropriately. Make a big hole than the pot as they will thrive more in the open garden.

How To Transplant Tomato Plants To The Garden?

You don’t need to remove the container if it is biodegradable. You just want to make the soil surface flat to make it compatible with the garden soil surface.

However, if it is non-biodegradable, loosen the pot cautiously without harming the plant root. If possible, make a root ball from close to the root area. It will keep the root safe and make sure not to touch the stems too.

Next, place the root ball on the hole and fill the area with compost soil. You can slightly water them if they seem dry. Check out how they grow for the first few weeks of transplant.

If you are getting it in snippet then let us tell you that we have discussed how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons in the beginning.

Can You Start Tomato Seeds In Egg Cartons?

Can You Start Tomato Seeds In Egg Cartons?

Can you start tomato seeds in egg cartons?

Yes, you can begin to tomato seeds in egg cartons if they have a sound drainage system and at least some space to let seeds grow. However, as tomatoes are fast-growing plants, you want to re-pot them in large-sized pots when they start sprouting.

Before knowing How to grow tomato seed in egg carton kits, it is essential to know this question: can you start tomato seeds in egg cartons?

According to many garden experts, egg cartons are one of the best recycling options to grow tomatoes or other fruit or vegetable seeds. If it is biodegradable, it will be a bonus. Because you are saving yourself from the mess of removing it. You can keep it when re-potting to a bigger pot.

If you are getting it in snippet then let us tell you that we have discussed how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons in the beginning.

Can I Use Plastic Egg Cartons To Start Seeds?

Can I Use Plastic Egg Cartons To Start Seeds?Can I Use Plastic Egg Cartons To Start Seeds?

Can I use plastic egg cartons to start seeds?

Any types of plastic egg carton are suitable for growing tomato seeds. However, the best option is the one that has a clear top and separate places for keeping each egg on the bottom.

Are you thinking of growing tomato plants in egg cartons that are made from plastics? Plastic egg cartons are sturdy enough to last years. But, they are non-biodegradable, meaning you want to find alternative options to use them.

If you are getting it in snippet then let us tell you that we have discussed how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons in the beginning.

Tips For Growing Tomatoes Plants

You have already known all the nuts and bolts about how to grow tomato seed in egg carton kits. As you will surely grow tomato plants for a long time, we are mentioning some extra tips.

  1. When you want to grow tomato plants on soil, try to choose as large pots as you can.
  2. While planting the tomatoes seedling, try to make a deep hole for the best possible growth.
  3. Never miss the watering schedule; keep watering them consistently and daily once or twice.
  4. Occasionally, feed them different nutrients such as potassium & nitrogen. We selected this one as the best food for the tomato plant.
  5. Always ensure they receive a sufficient amount of sunlight every day.
  6. Create mulch for tomato plants even while growing them on pots to protect the root.
  7. Try to choose the best quality soil for tomato plants, such as aged compost-enriched.

 Wrapping Up

So, are you still wondering how to grow tomato seeds in egg cartons? Hopefully, you don’t. Just follow the steps mentioned above for growing tomato plants in egg cartons. Happy Gardening!

Last update on 2021-07-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API