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Wednesday 1 March 2017

Eggshell Herb Garden : Plus Low Carb Herb Recipes

"How To Grow Your Own Herbs On Your Kitchen Counter:
It’s easier said than done to ensure our families have access to fresh veggies every day. Between busy work schedules, family, or space restraints, maintaining even indoor plants can be a daunting task. Daunting, maybe. Impossible, definitely not!

If you have access to a bright window, herbs can be grown all year long, right on your kitchen counter. Even if you don’t have the space or time to tend to a garden, growing your own herbs can be an easy and affordable way to spice and brighten up your daily meals.

There are so many ways to grow indoor plants these days – the high tech gadgets, lights, and monitors are pricier ways to ensure a green thumb, but they are certainly not the only way. In fact, growing seedlings straight from discarded egg shells is an easy and effective way to make sure your herbs get off to a great start. Here’s everything you need to know to start your eggshell garden.

How To Grow Eggshell Seedlings
What you’ll need:
Saved eggshell halves
Egg carton
Variety of herb seeds
A small enough spoon that fits into the eggshell
Sharp pin to pierce eggshell
Water and spray bottle

1. Set aside your used egg shell halves. To ensure a good break, using a very sharp knife, slice the top off the egg, reserving the bottom half. A clean break is not necessary, but you do want to ensure the egg cup is large enough to hold your soil and seedling. After pouring out the egg’s center, rinse well with hot water to clean and remove any residue that could rot or mould (including the membrane). Once cleaned, place them in the carton to dry.

2. Now you are ready to further prepare the egg for your herb seeds. Inspect your egg halves, gently chipping away the edges to create a larger opening, if needed. Using a sharp needle, create a small opening at the bottom center of the egg. This will act as drainage for your “planter”. This will also allow the roots to emerge once you’ve actually planted your mature seedling.

3. Spray the inside of each egg with water, and evenly spoon in soil until filled. Soil should be moist but not overly wet or muddy. Using the seed package directions as your guide, plant seeds as instructed and return egg shells to their carton and place in a well lit window.

4. Water plants daily with spray bottle, according to seed instructions. Within a week or two you will begin to see sprouts emerge.

5. When sprouts have grown to approximately 2 inches, they may be strong enough to transfer to a larger container or garden. You can do so by either thinning them out and placing them individually into containers, or cracking the egg around the seedling and planting them with the eggshells still surrounding them. The egg shell provides calcium, minerals and nutrients that fertilize the plant. They also deter snails and other pests.

Tips to ensure success:
Choose hardy herb varieties - Herbs such as basil, bay leaf, French parsley, chives, mint, oregano, rosemary and thyme are hardy varieties that will thrive indoors.

Companion plants - Planting certain plants next to each other may also help their growth. Research companion plants to see what make good pairs. Planting marigold around a garden acts as a great pest deterrent.

Lighting is key - Finding a window sill that maintains good bright, but not stark sun, for 4-5 hours a day will help your plants thrive.

Don’t overwater - Over-watering is just as bad as under-watering. Soil should be moist, but never muddy or over-saturated. There should always be a way for the water to drain effectively either through pebbles placed at the bottom of the planter, or a drainage hole with a basin to catch the water, so roots don’t remain damp and mould.

Nutrient shortage - A shortage of nutrients may be more of an issue with indoor than outdoor plants. Be sure to replenish topsoil with natural fertilizers or nutrient drops to ensure they are getting enough nutrients. Mineral water may also be better suppliers of nutrients than purified tap water.

Harvest Correctly - It is especially important when your herbs are young to harvest them correctly. Research the particular herb for how it should be pruned. Over pruning can result in stunted growth, or damage or kill the plant. Typically, only one third of the plant should be harvested at a time. Removing the flowers may also result in a more vibrant flavour."

The above words and picture from
James Colquhoun, filmmaker of Food Matters and Hungry For Change and founder of FMTV. Along with Laurentine ten Bosch, James founded Food Matters. His documentary, Hungry For Change, reveals how the diet and processed food industries are the enemies of permanent weight loss, vibrant health, and natural living.

If you don't already grow your own herbs, perhaps this article may inspire you!
There are so many great recipes that use fresh herbs, such as these

Fish Casserole with Mushrooms and French Mustard uses both basil and parsley.  
Have a look, recipe suggestion here

Chicken With Mushrooms, a tasty meal which uses parsley to enhance the flavour,
Have a look at the recipe here

Omelette with a goat’s cheese twist, one of my favourite omelettes.
Don't forget the handful of fresh chives, finely chopped, see recipe here

Have you a favourite herb (or two) that you use? Do you grow your own?
Fresh herbs are lovely ... but I do also keep some dried herbs in my kitchen cupboard ... just in case!
All the best Jan


eileeninmd said...

Hello, the egg herb containers are so cute. All three of the meals look delicious. Thanks for sharing. Have a happy Wednesday!

Tom said...

...always a cute idea.

Debbie said...

i have done the herbs in the eggs and given them at easter time - they are nice to place at each table setting! you can also do the same thing with flower seeds!!!

Connie said...

I could sit down to that omelet right now . . . that photo started up the engine in the hungry section of my brain :) Adorable herb garden, too :)

Martha said...

My gosh, those egg herb containers are adorable!

The Happy Whisk said...

So cute.

Christine said...

Thanks for these great recipes and the herb garden instructions!

Lisabella Russo said...

What a charming idea! Thank you!

Revrunner said...

Hmm, you've given me an idea for how to maybe start some pumpkin seeds. :-)

happyone said...

A great idea and so nice to use fresh herbs.

Linda said...

I love the egg shell idea, and the casserole looks delicious!

Margaret D said...

Great to grow plants in egg shells.
We don't eat many herbs at all, some seem to not agree, so those ones are left alone.

Bob Bushell said...

This one I agree with, not the chicken!!!

Snowbird said...

What a marvelous idea, growing herbs in eggshells, don't they look marvelous! I really can't wait to give this a go!xxx

Magic Love Crow said...

Wow, what a great post! Thanks for everything! Love the egg shell idea and love the recipes! Hugs!

Lisa said...

I bet your grandchildren would like to have a go at growing the cress inside an egg shell.
I always have dried in the cupboard but I never buy fresh herbs. I've tried growing them in the garden but alas I fail each time!
Lisa x