How to Start Your Garden in Eggshells

In Minnesota, most gardeners start planning and dreaming about their gardens as early as the day they close up their garden in the fall. Our winters are long and cold and planning for spring gives everyone a reason to endure winter and continue to live here. I realize that sounds dramatic! Haha!

While there’s more to it than that, one of my favorite things about Minnesota is that we get to experience all 4 seasons. Fresh produce has always been part of my life. I come from a long line of gardeners. Something you may not know about us is that my husband, I, and our kids, along with my father-in-law, started an organic gardening business a few years back. We sold Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) shares and always had an abundance of produce. I love to can and freeze produce, so it was an incredibly fruitful time.

Pictured: One of our high tunnel greenhouses. We had 2 along with an acre garden!

While we have scaled back around here and no longer run that business, (holy long hours) we still enjoy gardening for ourselves. For the most part, I purchase our plants and seeds each spring at one of our local nurseries. It’s part of the fun for me. Our daughter and I head out and load up on all the plants, flowers and seeds and come home and end up with dirt up to our elbows. I love that she has acquired this love for fresh, healthy food and the time it takes to yield the benefits.

But, if you’re up for an earlier start, the ability to save some money and a great way to start your own little garden, planting seeds directly into eggshells works great! Eggshells are rich in calcium carbonate which is essential for healthy plants.

How to Plant Seeds in Eggshells

  • Collect eggshells. If I’m not needing eggs at the moment, I crack them, cook them and feed them to my chickens. They love that!

  • Rinse the eggshells out with water.

  • Fill each eggshell with potting soil.

  • Add 2 or 3 seeds and bury to the depth stated on the vegetable packet. **If you want a quicker germination, soak the seeds overnight before planting.

  • Place in a sunny windowsill and wait for the seeds to sprout. Germination is different for different plants so don’t be discouraged. Keep the soil moist. A spray bottle works great for this!

  • Once the seed has sprouted, wait until the seedling is about 4 to 5 inches tall before hardening off and setting outside.

  • When ready to plant into a pot or the ground, carefully crush the eggshell so the roots of the seedlings have room to grow.

  • Keeping the seedling in the carefully crushed shell, plant and water as you normally would any other plant in the garden.

Cute little sprouts on day 5
Apparently, Miracle thought she needed to guard the seedlings!

Heading into the spring and summer, we look forward to many hours connecting with our kids in the garden and at the dinner table. My chickens look forward to the scraps and fresh greens they get to snack on! Whatever it is that you love to do in these months, do a lot of it! Winter will be here soon enough and we will be back to just dreaming of warmer days.

Tinkerbell decided to get in on the flower planting this year.

Until next time,


–The Wing Lady

Published by Annie

Annie Wing is the author of Strong Animals Chicken 101 blog. She is a busy mom with 3 active kids. Annie and her family reside on an acreage in the Redwood River Valley in Minnesota. She enjoys gardening and her absolute favorite pastime is doting on her 28 chickens!