Many uses for egg shells in your garden


This time of year you probably have a larger number of egg shells heading to your trash.  Between dying Easter eggs and our new tradition of making Ukrainian Easter bread (uses over a dozen eggs) I end up with quite a pile of egg shells.


The good news is there are many uses for these to use in your planting and in your garden.

Use #1 Soil amendment: Egg shells consist of calcium carbonate which many of your plants desperately need; apples, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cherries, citrus, conifers, cotton, curcurbits, melons, grapes, legumes, lettuce, peaches, peanuts, pears, peppers, potatoes, tobacco, and tomatoes (just name a few)   What I like to do is collect the egg shells and throw them in a freezer bag and keep them in the freezer.  Once I have a dozen or so saved up I put them into the oven (when I am warming it up to bake something else) and give them a good toasting.  I quick spin in the coffee grinder and I have some great calcium powder to apply to plants when planting, or seep in some water overnight to give your tomatoes a quick boost if they are appearing sufficient.


Use #2 Compost nutrient additive: If you start getting too much lying around you can also add some to your compost pile to give that black gold a little extra boost.  Just be sure you crush them finely (or powder as mentioned in Use #1) or you will just find a bunch of whole eggshells in your finished compost.

Use #3 Seed pots: If you are even just a little bit careful when cracking these eggs you can add a little soil to these egg shells add a seed and use them to start seeds.  Provided that the seeds are round you will want to also save the egg carton to keep them upright.


Use #4 Pest deterrent: Using the same method of creating a powder in Use #1 this granule form can be sprinkled around the base of your plants to deter cutworms and slugs who will find these abrasive surface undesirable.


9 Responses to “Many uses for egg shells in your garden”

  1. The Sage Butterfly Says:

    What great tips! I use eggshells in my garden, particularly around my tomato plants, to keep blossom end rot from coming by for a visit. I will have to try the toasting and grinding method.

  2. The Cheap Vegetable Gardener Says:

    Marilynn, I have also heard of doing similiar for human consumption but I think I would opt for my pretty blue pills from the grocery store for my own consumption.

  3. Randy Says:

    Lots of good ideals here, thanks for sharing them. I used to use egg shells as fishing chum. You drop in the shells from your boat they take a long time to sink to the bottom and look like little fish.

  4. Marilynn Britton Says:

    If you have your own chickens to get the eggs from you can also toast and grind them up to feed to the chickens with their food to give them the needed calcium for stronger shells in the eggs they lay.

  5. Wendy Says:

    I’m just curious.. do you have to toast them to alleviate the possibility of salmonella or something? Is there a reason they can’t just dry out naturally and be used?

    Thanks for the tips!!

  6. The Cheap Vegetable Gardener Says:

    Wendy, if you clena them well (or if the eggs are pretty fresh) your risk to salmonella should be minimal. I do it “just to be safe” and I also find that they become a bit more brittle and are easier to crush into fine powder.

  7. Sarah Says:

    I had no idea I could out it all over the plants, I only ever used crushed egg shells for deterring the slugs, but now I know better!

  8. Garden Guru Says:

    I simpy toss my empty egg shels in a plastic bin and every 6 months I grind the shells in a garage sale, 2 dollar blender.

    I do this outside and wear a dust mask. If you inhale too much calcium carbonate (egg shell)it could possibly make your breathing difficult or even make your lungs bleed. So be careful grinding egg shells.

    I never toast them because you could lose valuable nutrients.

  9. J-9 Says:

    Hi! I’ve been saving my eggshells for a while now, but I’d been crushing them with a mortar and pestle. What a job! So I really like your idea with the coffee grinder. I’ll give that a whirl.

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