My grandmother buried toilet paper cardboard tubes in her garden: here’s why.

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toilet paper cardboard for garden

Gardening enthusiasts are continually looking for ways to enrich and enhance their garden’s soil. Methods like applying fertilizer, composting, and mulching boost nutrients naturally, but there is another hidden gem that you can use: toilet paper cardboard tubes.

Discover the benefits and creative applications of burying these biodegradable tubes in your garden.

Why you should bury toilet paper cardboard tubes in your garden ?

Toilet paper tubes serve multiple purposes when buried in soil, including summoning earthworms, retaining water, and providing aeration – all of which contribute to healthier and more prosperous growth of plants. As they are made of cardboard, these tubes hold moisture well, creating a perfect environment for earthworms to thrive.

The same aeration provided by worms also promotes better root development for your plants, reinforcing the advantages of using these waste materials in your yard.

You don’t need to stress about retrieving the tubes later as worms and other microscopic organisms break them down and convert them into valuable nutrients for your plant life.


When to bury toilet paper cardboard tubes ?

Make it a habit to save used toilet paper tubes throughout the year for future use in the garden. When starting a new gardening project or refreshing an existing area, incorporate the tubes into your soil management routine for optimal results.

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Creative uses of toilet paper cardboard tubes in your garden

Apart from simply burying the tubes, some ingenious DIY projects can help you get even more out of this readily available resource:

Seed starter planters

Cardboard tubes make excellent seed starter pots, providing an eco-friendly and low-cost method to propagate your plants. Follow these simple steps to create an army of seedling planters:

  1. Gather your toilet paper tubes, scissors, a ruler, a marker, and a small dish of water.
  2. Make four equally spaced cuts at one end of the tube, about 1 inch (2.5 cm) from the bottom.
  3. Fold the resulting flaps inward, creating a base for holding soil and seeds.
  4. Mist the inside of the tube lightly with water to help initiate the decomposition process, ensuring that it does not become too wet in the process.
  5. Add seed starting mix and planting according to label instructions.

Once your seedlings are ready for transplanting into your garden or pots, you can plant them directly inside their cardboard biodegradable homes without any need for plastic nursery trays.

Underground pest barrier

Burrowing pests such as moles, gophers, and voles can wreak havoc on your gardens, causing significant damage to both plants and hardscape features. Burying several layers of toilet paper cardboard tubes around the perimeter of your plot can deter these critters by creating an underground barrier they are reluctant to cross – the worms love the chewed, fertilized cartons!

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Incorporate other household waste to enrich your garden

While toilet paper tubes hold vast potential, don’t forget about other household waste materials that can also provide valuable nutrients to your garden:

  • Coffee grounds: A great source of nitrogen; sprinkle used grounds around the base of acid-loving plants such as azaleas and blueberries or add them to your compost pile.
  • Crushed eggshells: Supply calcium to plants and can deter slugs and snails when scattered around plants.
  • Banana peels: Chop up the peels and bury them near the roots of your tomato plants for a potassium boost.

By using toilet paper cardboard tubes and other waste materials, you can effortlessly enhance the health and productivity of your garden while minimizing waste entering landfills.


Justin, an avid writer, is equally passionate about gardening, especially cultivating beautiful flowers and productive vegetable patches. His writing skillfully intertwines his gardening experiences with vivid descriptions and keen insights, inspiring readers to appreciate nature's beauty and consider their own gardening adventures.