Happy Monday!

We hope you’re all staying safe and doing well as our stay-at-home order continues here in North Carolina. We know it’s a tough, anxious time for many people, and we want to make sure we’re providing some suggestions to keep you feeling entertained and uplifted.

Last week we featured some home decor crafts, but since it seems like our cold snaps are officially over, this week we wanted to feature some easy gardening tips! If you have a small amount of space, you can plant a garden, either in the ground or in containers you probably already have around your house or apartment.

Of course, the first step to planting a garden is starting seeds, so that’s where we’ll begin.

This piece from HGTV has lots of great suggestions for how to get seeds started, but there are a few we really like, as they can be done using things you already have at home, even if you’ve never started a garden before.

First, did you know you can fold old newspaper into pots that biodegrade over time? That means you can start your seeds, plant the sprouts into the ground inside their newspaper pots, and you don’t even have to worry about repotting. Any newsprint will do, including junk mail circulars you might find in your mailbox once a week or so. You can also use newspaper or newsprint junk mailers to create seed bombs!

You can also use cardboard tubes in a similar way. You can get these from spent rolls of toilet paper or paper towels.

You can use eggshells as small planting containers for seeds and sprouts as long as you poke some drainage holes into the bottom of the shells with a needle or pin.

Don’t forget that in order to start seeds, you’ll need a way to keep the seedlings warm and well-hydrated in addition to providing them with good light. It’s totally possible to achieve all of this in your own home with a large window and a space heater.

If you have pets, make sure to protect your seedlings and your animals. Not only will some pets like cats take a lot of interest in chewing on your fragile new plants, some of your new crops could prove to be toxic to animals. Here’s a list of common garden plants that are totally safe for animals.

We hope you enjoy this new, warm season and that you get plenty of sunshine and joy digging in your garden.