The Nifty Sponge Cloth Hack Every Gardener Should Know

There are many ways to start seeds. Of course, the most common process is to start seeds directly in soil, but there's another way to get a head start on next season's garden. All you need for this process is a sponge cloth, a canning jar, and a bit of water to sprout seeds.

While this process is certainly a convenient hack for starting the seeds you plan to plant. It is also useful for checking to see if old seeds are still viable. Sometimes, we find a seed packet we forgot about. Other times, we just need to know if the seeds leftover from previous years will still sprout. You certainly don't want to waste time and energy planting a row of seeds only to discover they are duds. Whether you are working with brand new seeds for the garden or checking to see if old ones are still good, this process is an efficient way to sprout them.

Sprouting seeds

Sprouting seeds in a sponge cloth is a no-waste version of the same process using paper towels and plastic baggies. For this process, you'll start with a sponge cloth, which is a product perfectly named since it does the job of cleaning like a sponge and a cloth. Get your sponge cloth wet and wring it out thoroughly. It should be damp, but not soggy since excess water can cause the seeds to rot before they sprout.

Sprinkle the seeds you want to sprout on one half of the sponge cloth and fold it over so they are covered. Place the cloth in a large canning jar and seal it with a lid, creating a mini-greenhouse. Put the jar on a windowsill or somewhere warm where you will remember to check it every few days. Once you see most of the seeds have sprouted roots, you can place them in soil mix under grow lights or plant them directly in your garden.