Tabletop Greenhouse from a Floppy Disk Holder

Tabletop Greenhouse from a Floppy Disk Holder

Several years ago, I repurposed a muffin tin as a seedling tray and it worked beautifully. And while I could have done that again this year, I wanted to try out an experiment. You see, my friends at T4T Thrift Shop had sent me a floppy disk holder (a while ago!) to upcycle. As I mulled over different project possibilities, I kept coming back to the idea of transforming it into a tabletop greenhouse.

floppy disk holder

Remember those things? They were on everyone’s computer desks back in the day. And now they often end up on thrift store shelves.

And like I also mentioned above, here is the seedling tray I made from muffin pan.

plant starting tray with a muffin pan

But back to the floppy disk file. To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t sure if it would WORK as a greenhouse. Sure, the top was clear/see-through, but it wasn’t colorless (an important distinction for a science nerd like me). 

And when I think of real greenhouses, the tops/sides are clear AND colorless.

But, I decided it was worth experimenting with. I already had the seeds and jiffy pots, and couldn’t wait to get started.

making a tabletop greenhouse

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Decorating a Floppy Disk Holder

First, I dismantled the floppy disk file box by unsnapping the lid and removing the plastic dividers. Then, I wiped down the base and top.

repurposing a floppy disk file box

Of course, giving it a makeover is completely optional. But the discolored base of the floppy disk holder wasn’t overly appealing, so…

I spray painted it white! Because why not?

spray painting a floppy disk holder

Next, I decided to stencil on some wildflowers. But the only stencils I could find were adhesive, and I didn’t want them to ruin the fresh coat of paint!

adhesive stencils for a tabletop greenhouse

So, I peeled off the stencils I planned to use and stuck them (and un-stuck them) on a terrycloth towel. I did that several times until they were fuzzy and barely tacky at all.

Then, I simply placed the non-sticky stencils on the floppy disk holder and stippled some craft paint on top.

using a wildflowers stencil

After I finished the stenciling, I carefully removed the stencils and used them on the other side of the box. Then, I sprayed a matte top coat on the entire thing before snapping the lid back on.

upcycling a floppy disk holder

Isn’t that better? And now it was ready to become a tabletop greenhouse!

Seedlings for a Tabletop Greenhouse

With the actual miniature greenhouse all set, I turned my attention to the future seedlings! I gathered up some top soil, seeds, jiffy pots, and a spoon to act as a small trowel.

starting seeds for an indoor greenhouse

Important to not, I’d also checked and doublechecked the size of the floppy disk holder and cut down the jiffy pot length to fit inside ahead of time.

And just like that, I had a small tray of future herb plants ready to place in my tabletop greenhouse!

planting seeds for a tabletop greenhouse

Now, I just needed to water them, give them sun, and hope that my experiment with this small indoor greenhouse really worked.

I’m not exactly known for my green thumb, so I was honestly prepared for this to fail, but…

germinating seeds

It worked- like, REALLY, REALLY WELL. Heat and moisture would build up inside, encouraging growth. And I would periodically vent it by opening the lid, as needed.

condensation in a tabletop greenhouse


Tabletop Greenhouse from a Floppy Disk Holder

Honestly, I couldn’t be happier with how it worked out. I let the greenhouse do its thing, which let me be a hands-off plant mama.

Which is really my speed when it comes to plant care, I’m afraid!

seedlings in an indoor greenhouse

Upcycling a floppy disk holder into a tabletop greenhouse was also beneficial in other ways. Namely, it protected my seedlings from our curious kitty, Cottonball.

He spent many sunny afternoons sleeping next to my little greenhouse. But he wasn’t able to disturb the tender sprouts, which was a relief for me!

indoor greenhouse

Now, I know that this idea is on the small side and most gardeners would need several dozen of these for their plant trays! So, it may not be as practical for everyone.

BUT. For small-scale growers, it’s a delightful and inexpensive way to create greenhouses each Spring. And you can bet your bottom dollar that I’ll be scouting out more floppy disk holders for my future garden, as well!

Many thanks again to T4T Thrift Shop for challenging me with the computer disk holder!

And if you enjoyed this upcycling idea for a tabletop greenhouse, then you’ll also love these hanging herb baskets, as well. Can you guess what they started out as?

hanging herb baskets from lampshade frames

Craft on!


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tabletop greenhouse

reuse a floppy disk holder as a small greenhouse

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Sarah Ramberg is the owner of Sadie Seasongoods, a website that celebrates all things secondhand. From upcycling ideas and thrifted decor to vintage-centric travel itineraries, Sadie Seasongoods is a one-stop shop for anyone who loves thrifting and approachable repurposing ideas. Sarah is also the author of “Crafting with Flannel” and has been featured in numerous media outlets and magazines.


  1. Fun use for an out of date product. It looks just big enough for small herbs to get started, once they grow too large it would be time to transplant them into pots or your yard anyway.

  2. Carmen Montmarquet says

    Great Job! Such a smart idea, Thanks!

  3. Miss Sadie,you are resourceful,ingenious.What a clever use for something that has outlived its purpose. I think this would be a great project for a class room.Would require more than one ,possibly use it as an experiment.Great work

  4. How clever! I’m old enough to know what that is, hah. Just occurred to me it could also be used as a bread box for homemade tea breads, muffins, etc. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Mother Deer says

    What a clever idea, and cat-proof no less. I think that I have an old floppy disk holder in the garage and will give this a try 🙂

  6. This is genius! I am going to do this!!


  7. Love this idea! Amazing! And it’s so cute. My cat will look at it and try to open it but I’ll place something to stop that. Oh! I could grow catnip for her! Now that she’ll try to open. Gotta find a way to not allow that at all.

  8. That’s adorable….AND ingenious!! I love it.

  9. creativelybeth says

    Sarah, your upcycled projects are always so inspiring! I’d love for you to join us over at the Creative Crafts Linky Party every Wednesday through Sunday
    Followed and Pinned! 🙂
    Creatively, Beth

  10. What a great idea for starting seeds and such a clever upcycle for a floppy disk holder. It’s so pretty and yes, I’m kicking myself for getting rid of my disk holder just like that one.

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