Using Cardboard in the Garden

A Junk that can be Turned into a Treasure

Using Cardboard In The Garden-a-cardboard-box
A cardboard box

There is an old saying that “one mans junk is another man’s treasure” which is so true and in fact, one mans junk can save us some trouble along with time and a few extra bucks as well.

There are so many ways to have success in gardening going the cheap and easy way which makes sense, how do we accomplish it. By thinking outside of the box

Thinking Outside of the Box

I am sure you have heard this statement before, thinking outside of the box. Thinking outside of the box can make life much easier yes even when it comes to working in our gardens. What we will be looking at is just that thinking outside of the box with the use of cardboard boxes in our gardens and how this simple but yet effective trick can help in bringing about success to sustaining our garden plants.

7 ways to use cardboard in our gardens

1. Cardboard as compost

The use of cardboard as compost is a great way of adding organic to your soil for enrichment, Since cardboard is natural it can be easily broken down, shoeboxes, cereal boxes, etc.. can be shredded or torn up into small pieces and added to your compost bin. Your junk just became your treasure to enrich your soil.

2. Using cardboard as mulch to smother weeds

Areas, where you have a weed issue, can be dealt with in a cheap and easy way. Placing small pieces of cardboard around garden plants and moistening a bit to help to keep it in place will kill weeds and because cardboard comes from a natural source (trees) will break down over time adding nutrients to the soil.

3. Cardboard container gardening

Yes, you heard right you can have a seasonal garden with the help of cardboard boxes. Line the inside of the cardboard box with plastic to hold it together from excess moisture.

Fill the box with soil followed by adding your plants, you have just found a cheap but yet simple way to grow your plants. Ensure however that your cardboard container has several holes at the bottom for water drainage.

How To Use Cardboard in The Garden-egg-panel-paper
Egg panel paper

4. Seed starter trays

Get a jump start on the season by using small cardboard boxes (egg cartons) as seed starter trays by sowing your seeds indoors and transferring them into your garden once the weather warms up.

5. Cardboard as a weed killer

Large areas of your yard that you may be thinking about turning into a garden but is filled with weeds can be taken care of in a simple and easy way just place sheets of cardboards in those areas.

Hold down the cardboard by placing rocks that have weight at each corner, after a few weeks the weeds will be eliminated and as the cardboard breaks down will add nutrients to the soil.

6. A birdhouse

Create a home for birds with the help of a cardboard box, a simple house form with a hole in the middle is an inexpensive way to make a birdhouse. The house should be placed or secured in an area away from predators along with being in the shade.

7. Constructing a garden

If you are thinking of converting a part of your lawn into a garden the use of cardboard boxes can help you to accomplish this. Mark out the area that is to be used for your garden and lay sheets of cardboard down.

Hold down the sheets of cardboard in place with rocks that have weight, leave the cardboard in place for a few weeks to kill the grass. You have the option of removing the cardboard or leaving it and covering it with soil.

The cardboard will decompose along with the grass adding nutrients to the soil, this is a smart and inexpensive way to start a flower or vegetable garden.

The final word on using cardboard in the garden

There you have it, thinking outside of the box can bring so much garden success by using cardboard boxes to help in fighting the many issues gardeners face. I believe that this idea of using cardboard is pretty amazing because this is what I refer to as smart gardening so think outside of the box as you garden for success you will be happy with the results you receive by doing it the cheap, simple, easy but effective way. Let’s think outside of the box by using cardboard in our gardens.


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About the author

+ posts

Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.

2 thoughts on “Using Cardboard in the Garden”

  1. Nice post!  Not only do we need to think outside the box, but we need to use the box in the garden.  I have used some of your techniques.  I’ve used cardboard to keep down weeds, to prepare soil for new gardening, and have used egg cartons as planter trays.  You are right — what a useful material!  

    I haven’t tried using them for compost, but think that will be next.

    • Thinking outside of the box with the help of boxes is pretty amazing, this natural organic can do so much for our gardens. I am so happy to help.


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