Recycling K-Cups and Plywood into Seed-Starting Trays

A few days ago, I posted about how my husband figured our coffee K-Cups were the perfect size for starting seeds. In an effort to recycle these plastic cups, as well as the plywood scraps from our Halloween decorations, he created some impromptu trays for starting seeds. I was really impressed with what he was able to throw together, using only materials he recycled from other projects…and it gave me a good excuse to drink more coffee while I ogled him with the power tools. All we needed for this project were the K-Cups, plywood scraps, a pencil, an electric drill and a jigsaw or circular saw. We also ended up using some screws we had leftover from Halloween as well.

To get started, my husband first laid out some of our empty K-cups onto a plywood scrap in order to try and see what the best way to arrange the cups was. We wanted to maximize the use of the plywood scraps, while still giving enough room for plants to actually grow. Also, he wanted the trays to be smaller and more maneuverable, so that we could easily move them around as needed:

Once he had the design, I traced the base of the cups onto the plywood, and he drilled holes using his 1-1/2 inch drill bit:

Next, he used his jigsaw (though admittedly a circular saw would have worked too), and trimmed down the plywood scrap into a rectangle:

We used this first rectangle as a template, and quickly traced it repeatedly over our larger plywood scraps, so that we could speed up the process:

Once he had cut out the rectangles, my husband free-handed a design for legs, so that the trays would be supported and allow the K-Cups to drain well when watered. We cut out two for every rectangle:

In the meantime, I put my oldest heathen to work cleaning out all our collected K-cups and punching drainage holes in the bottom…because why have kids if you can’t make them do a little manual labor every once in a while?

Finally, my husband screwed the legs onto the rectangle, and the kids dropped in the K-Cups:

Overall, we made nearly a dozen trays in a very short amount of time, while using only materials we had on-hand. In our slow efforts to be more environmentally conscious, we’ve accomplished two goals with this project: we found a way to recycle and repurpose some things, and we are even more motivated to get our garden going this year.

As long as I keep my green-thumb-of-death contained, this should be a good year…

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