Sunday, May 20, 2012

Recycling Styrofoam for Lettuce and Mustard Greens

Earlier this year, I received a shipment of wine.  It was a case of wine that was shipped in a styrofoam case.  I though it was a wasteful use of resources since styrofoam isn't recyclable (other companies have used cardboard or recycled cardboard).  But then it hit me, I could try to use it for something.  It had 12 perfect holes.  It was meant to be re-purposed.

For a few months this styrofoam case sat in my foyer.  Everytime I passed it, I thought I should just throw it out.  It's just sitting there.  One day I realized what I could use it for.  Gardening!  I thought it would be perfect for lettuce! 

Luckily, I had some lettuce that were close enough to experiment on.  These seeds were sown outside on my grow rack on April 22nd.  

I put soil in to each of the chambers and potted up my young transplants.  

Here's the finished product.  Hopefully it's enough room for the lettuce to grow and will be enough to support the root system.  I'll let you know how it goes.  

Transplanted out:
1) 3 x Little Gem Lettuce
2) 3 x Prizehead Lettuce
3) 2 x Butterhead Lettuce + 1 x Osaka Purple Mustard Greens
4) 2 x Outredgeous Red Romaine Lettuce + 1 x Osaka Purple Mustard Greens


Sri Ranjani said...

That's clever usage. I am using a slightly bigger Styrofoam box to grow peas as it does nor require too much space. My styrofoam box was came with our AC as a protective casing.

Sri Ranjani said...

That's a clever way of growing lettuce. You can use it further to grow transplants of other plants too.

I am growing my peas in slightly bigger styrofoam box that we got with out new AC. The peas look happy - of course they don't demand too much growing space.

Rowena... said...

Holly that is just so, so cool that I'm hoping my wine shipment (when I eventually get around to ordering!) will come in a styrofoam box like yours. Yay for repurposing!

Athena at Minerva's Garden said...

What a great idea! Styrofoam is such a pain to get rid of--we had a bunch, and had to take it to a special recycler, and even then they would not accept any that was dirty or not bagged up. So well done for finding a good way to reuse it.

~Holly~ said...

Sri-gLad you were able to recycle your styrofoam too!

Rowena-yeah, most other places I order from ship in cardboard or recycled materials except this one winery.

Athena-Styrofoam is always a hassle to recycle for me too. Glad I was able to give it a second life.

Jami @ An Oregon Cottage said...

What a great idea to reuse this, Holly! Keep us posted. :-)

~Holly~ said...

Jami: Thanks!! So far so good. Even after leaving for the week. The two buttercrunch plants didn't survive though. I think they were too small and got battered by the rain.