Grow Seedlings of Hope

We take trees for granted. Without them, life on our planet would end. These arboreal beauties supply oxygen, conserve water, and fertilize soil. Trees also provide habitat for everything from millipedes to grizzly bears. One of the most wonderful things you can do for wildlife is to plant a diversity of native trees. You can buy seedlings or saplings from nurseries or, better still, start your very own from seeds.

Roll several sheets of newspaper (black and white only) around a rolling pin or other narrow, cylindrical object. Slide each paper tube off and staple the ends.

Cut each tube into 8- to 10-cm lengths. Staple the ends of each pot. (The pots will be bottomless.)

Prepare the reflective window box where the seedlings will sit. Cover the back of an open cardboard box with aluminum foil. This reflective surface will direct sunlight to the rear of the box, preventing seedlings from growing lopsidedly due to leaning towards the window.

Arrange the seeded pots no more than three rows deep in the box. Cover the top with cellophane to prevent moisture loss.