Mid-American Gardener

Garbage Can Horticulture: How to Repurpose Recycling for Seed Starting and Cuttings


Chuck and Shane have lots to share this week as they tackle your garden questions and share a bit about their favorite growing tools in preparation for spring. 


Hopefully you have placed your orders for this year’s spring seeds. If not, watch last week’s episode to see which catalogs Kay recommends placing an order with. 

When you’re ready to start sowing your seeds, Chuck has the perfect solution to save a bit of money, reuse items that would otherwise be thrown away, and successfully grow plants: use recycling! Milk cartons, plastic takeout containers, and egg cartons provide the perfect warm environment and protection for seed starting and cuttings without all the effort. Just be careful about over watering since you cannot control drainage with these containers. 

But when should I plant my tomato seeds? Onions? Pepper? What about fennel? Don’t worry! Chuck has you covered! He has created a comprehensive list of when to sow from seed for transplanting. For easy reference, download Chuck's Planing Guide.

Shane also has a trick up his sleeve to keep his plants happy and healthy in the winter: a LED grow light. Last time he was on the show, Shane showed us his four-headed light which keeps his plants healthier than they are in the summer, and our viewers were so excited by it. We asked him if he could bring it in again since so many people wanted to know more about it.

Shane’s LED Full Spectrum Grow Light

We also answer your questions about residual toxins leftover from black walnut trees, weak bush branches, and the best plants for a trellis. 

If there’s a question you’d like to ask one of our panelists, please send us an email at yourgarden@gmail.com com, or you can find us on Facebook and Instagram.


Air Dates and Times

Channel Day Time
WILL-TV, Urbana Thursday 7 pm (live)
  Saturday 11 am (repeat)
WTVP-TV, Peoria Saturday 11:30 am
WEIU-TV, Charleston Sunday 1:30 pm
WSEC-TV, Springfield Saturday 11 am
WQEC-TV, Quincy Saturday 11 am
WMEC-TV, Macomb Saturday 11 am
Lakeshore PBS, Chicago/Northwest Indiana Friday 1 pm

Featured Entry

Spring has sprung!

There's finally things to do outside, as the Mid-American Gardener crew prep their gardens for the season!