Fix-It Friday: How To Use Eggshells In 6 Unexpectedly Egg-cellent Ways

Easter eggs
Fix-It FridayFood & DrinksHome Improvement 6 Comments

With Easter and Passover upon us, ’tis the season for all sorts of egg related symbolism and activities – hard-boiling, coloring, decorating, hiding, hunting, basket filling, devil-ing (my Aunt Rose’s deviled eggs are our holiday favorite!). An egg-stravaganza of eggs! But did you know that eggshells are A LOT more than they’re cracked up to be?

Turns out eggshells offer many natural DIY uses in the home and garden. So in the likely event you’ve got more eggs on hand than you know what to do with, read this! You’ll see that saving your eggshells now and throughout the year is an egg-cellent idea.


How To Use Eggshells In 6 Unexpectedly Egg-cellent Ways

1. Remove Coffee and Tea Stains
Do you have a favorite mug that’s stained from coffee or tea? Throw in a few eggshells with warm water, let it stand over night, and the shells will absorb the stain.

Eggs in enamel cup on burlap

2. Mellow Your Cup of Joe

Broken eggshells mixed in coffee grinds will take away the acidity in your brew. I’ve also read there’s an extra benefit of the shells adding calcium to your cup! (FYI… in coffee talk, “grinds” are what they’re called before the coffee is brewed, “grounds” are what they become after.)

3. Growing Seedlings

A fun kids project: Take eggshell halves and place them in an egg carton. Fill them with soil and plant the seeds. When they sprout, remove the seedlings from the carton, still in the shell, and plant them, shell and all! As the seedling roots grow, they’ll break up the shell and you have a built in fertilizer from the nutrient rich eggshells.

Green seedlings growing out of soil in egg shells

4. Drain and Nourish

Add broken eggshells to the bottom of your pots and containers, then add the soil. The shells create drainage that promote healthy roots, and also provide nutrients to the soil for healthy plants.

5. Deter Slimy Critters

Insects like snails and slugs don’t like eggshells. If you break up shells, not crush, the sharp edges are uncomfy to the soft bodies of these little slimy dudes as they crawl over them. Create a perimeter with broken shells around plants that are tempting to these types of bugs.

 

broken eggshells

6. Garden Fertilizer

Crushed eggshells mixed in your soil add calcium, sulfur, phosphorous, and potassium. Another breakfast by-product, coffee grounds, are nitrogen rich. Mix them together and you’ve got yourself an all-natural fertilizer, which makes for super healthy plants.

General Note: Be sure to rinse your eggshells and let them dry out for best results. Let them air dry on a paper or cloth towel. To crush, use a mortar and pestle. For chunkier pieces, wrap them in a kitchen towel or put them in a plastic baggie and gently break them by hand or use the back of a cooking spoon.


Writing about this project reminds me of my grandfather, Ignazio. He used to always add a mix of crushed eggshells and coffee grounds to his tomato plants – and he grew the biggest most delicious tomatoes in Brooklyn! Here’s a video about it…

Wishing everyone an egg-ceptional Easter and Passover!

Norma sig


Got A DIY Question? Ask-The-Expert!

If you have a DIY home repair, maintenance or improvement question for Norma, now is your chance to ask-the-expert and have her answer. Your burning question may just be the “star” of an upcoming Fix-It Friday column.

Add your question to the comments section below or email it to Women You Should Know.

Fix-It Friday is an exclusive Women You Should Know® editorial series authored by seasoned veteran of home improvement, Norma Vally, the former host of Discovery Home Channel’s series “Toolbelt Diva” and a show on Sirius Satellite Radio by the same name. The weekly column is designed to inspire women – weekend warriors, aspiring handywomen, and even seasoned DIYers – to take on home repairs and maintenance projects with confidence and gusto.

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  • Jean B.

    As always, Norma, great tips! I love the use of the eggshells at the bottom of the flower pots, and using them with coffee grinds as fertilizer. Happy Easter!

    • Norma

      Thanks! Same to you, my dear!

  • Egg-static

    so interesting… had no idea.I want to try the coffee idea, but I want to clarify idea #2. do you put the eggshells into the coffee grinds during storage or when you are actually brewing.

    • Norma

      When brewing!

  • Leah L

    Hi Norma, I’m a crazy gardener and my tomatoes were out of control last year because I used a 10-10-10 fertilizer. They were like 7 feet tall and leafy, it was nuts! This year I did the eggshells and coffee grinds (no other fertilizers) and so far the plants are compact, healthy, and no blossom end rot! I already have teensy tomatoes happening. Totally great tip!! I put the eggshells in a food processor before mixing with the grinds and it was the perfect consistency.

    • Norma

      Leah, I’m just seeing your comment now. Sorry I didn’t respond sooner! So happy you loved the tip…how did the rest of your growing season turn out? By the way, nice tip about using the food processor to crush the egg shells.

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