Thursday, May 14, 2015

Diapers Repurposed

In spite of the weather we are having this spring, I am starting to put my houseplants outside and gathering supplies to make some hanging baskets.  One of these days the weather will be hot and summer will be here.  In fact, the next two days will be pleasant.  Today I started looking at plants.  I went into the much hated big box store for a couple items and went to check out the garden center.  I was looking for a fuschia plant.  I buy a fuschia every year because the hummingbirds love them.  I couldn't find one but my husband spotted one on the half price rack.  It was the only one they had, and I was thrilled.

A nice Fuschia plant for only $5.49

I looked around at some other plants and found another one I liked on the half price rack.  It is called a calibrachoa.  It is a mini trailing petunia.  This one came in a regular pot, and I wanted it to be in a hanging basket.  I had a few empty baskets from last year so all I needed to do was re-pot it.  As I was cleaning out the old basket, I remembered something I had read last winter.  It was how to use the gel in a baby diaper.  Preferably an unused baby diaper.  I thought I would experiment.

A few weeks ago I cleaned my closet.  I came across seven baby diapers.  Now keep in mind my youngest grandchild is five years old and hasn't needed a diaper in years.  I can't explain why I still had these diapers.  Maybe the universe knew I would have a good use for them one day.  Fortunately it was not for my personal use but to use for potted plants.  The first thing I did was soak the diaper in eight cups of water.  Within minutes the diaper absorbed almost all the water.  Who knew a diaper can hold eight cups of liquid.

I laid out the diaper and cut it open.

Inside the diaper was a gel type substance that looks like snow.  I think there is a product you can buy in garden centers that mixes with potting soil that helps the plant from drying out.  This appears to be a similar product.

There was more than eight cups of gel inside the diaper.  I took some and mixed it with some soil.  I placed it in the bottom of the flower basket.  I removed my plant from it's pot and potted it in the hanging basket.  Now as the plant dries out this summer, the gel will hold enough moisture to keep the plant alive until it's watered again.  I googled this process and some people just cut a piece of diaper and place it in the bottom of the pot.  They watered it and added the soil on top.  I imagine that would work too.  From one diaper I have enough gel to pot many plants.  Maybe a scoop of gel could be put in the hole before planting some of our garden plants to keep them from drying out. Hopefully some toxicity won't be transferred to edible plants.  That should probably be researched.   I think anything safe for babies bottoms should be safe for everyone, but stranger things have happened.

My re-potted flower.  Time will tell how well the gel works.

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