See-Through Starts

Make indoor seed starters from plastic food containers decorated with handmade bugs.

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What You Need:

Put these cute bugs to work guarding your seedlings.
  • Plastic egg carton, or berry or bakery boxes with the lids attached
  • Darning needle
  • Fine-tip paint markers
  • Small wiggle eyes
  • Brightly colored buttons
  • Thick crafts glue
  • Colored paper clips
  • Potting soil
  • Seeds
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Instructions:

1. Decide where you want your bugs to go on the lid and sides of your plastic container. Use the darning needle to poke two holes in the container for each bug, spacing the holes about 1/4 inch apart. Use the paint markers to draw six bug legs radiating out from the pairs of holes.

2. Glue two wiggle eyes along one edge of each button. Be careful not to cover the holes in the button. Let the glue dry completely before you continue to the next step.

3. Use the paint markers to draw spots, stripes, or zigzags on the buttons.

4. To attach each button bug, unfold and straighten a colored paper clip, then fold the paper clip in half. Place a bug on the container over a pair of holes. Beginning on the inside of the container, thread the ends of the paper clip through the holes in the container and the button. Twist the ends of the paper clip together to secure the button. Shape the ends into the antennae.

5. Make sure the bottom of the container has some drainage holes. If it doesn', use scissors to poke a few holes (set the container on a plastic tray to avoid water damage).

6. Put potting soil in the bottom of the container. Prepare the seeds following the instructions on the seed package. Plant the seeds, placing some along the edge of the container so you can see the roots grow. Water the soil, close the lid, and place in a warm sunny spot. When the seeds sprout, open the lid. When the plants are large enough, transplant them into your garden.

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