Tape - Duct vs Foil? Opinions?

pixie_louNovember 22, 2011

I need to buy some tape for my jugs. Some people say use duct tape, some people say use foil tape. And some people may say some other type of tape which I don't remember.

So which do you use? And why? If climate makes a difference, I'm just West of Boston.

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molanic(Zone 5 IL)

My vote is for no tape. I used it my first year and it was a mess. It either fell off or stuck too well and was hard to get off...ruining the containers. You have to make sure your containers are clean and dry before applying which is an extra step. Once you open it in the spring you can't easily reclose it for bad weather. You end up buying a lot of tape to do all your containers and having to throw it away after use.

I just make two holes and use a twistie tie or pipe cleaner to hold the container closed. The container and ties can be reused for several years. The extra ventilation around the untaped cut also keeps it from getting too moist (which can promote moss and fungus).

    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 11:19AM
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I'm stuck with duct because when I first discovered WS, I stocked up and have 3-4 rolls of it in my cupboard waiting to be used. I agree it's not user-friendly when it comes time to open the jugs but since I bought it specifically for WS, I'll keep using it until it's gone. I use a box cutter to slice through it when I need to open a jug. Scissors get all sticky from it but the box cutter does a quick job without getting gunked up. I tried punching the two holes and using twistie ties but found it took longer than slapping a piece of tape across the cut opposite the handle.

I know the jugs won't hold up to more than a couple winters so I don't bother trying to recycle them. If you've seen any pictures of my pot ghetto, you know I write the seed names on the jugs in big letters with paint pen so rather than strike through the old name, I just recycle the jugs after I remove the HOS.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 4:32PM
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If I use tape, I tend to use clear packing tape that comes on a reel so it is easy to cut.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 4:52PM
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tomva(7-central virginia)

I use the blue Painters tape,really works well for me.I used the foil tape my 1st year,I couldnt get the jugs back open,lol.Had to cut them open..It was royal pain..

    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 6:29PM
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luke_oh(zone 5 NE Ohio)

My vote is for the bread wrapper twisties or pipe cleaners I also used some small electrical lock ties last year but once they are cut off you can't resuse them like the twisties or pipe cleaners. I found that the tape would not stick very well when the jugs were wet. So, I'm with Molanic.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 7:59PM
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bakemom_gw(z6 Central Ohio)

3 inch piece of duct tape vertically adjacent to the hinge.
foil tape in one inch squares with the pen imprint of the seeds' names. worked for years.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 6:00AM
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linda_jo(Raleigh, NC 7b)

Like Kimka I use clear packing tape on a dispenser with cutter. It sticks through rain and snow (we had 2 little snows here!) and is easy to pull off when it is time to open the jugs. When I have opened them and want to close when rain or frost is predicted, they stay closed without tape when they are snug against each other.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 9:00AM
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I like using foil tape because it has a backing and I can "prep" it in advance. Per jug: 3 small pieces to hold jug together at the cut seam, 1 small piece with the name of the seeds written on it in black paint pen.

If you decide on foil tape, do NOT buy the kind that has a blue backing. Boy did I struggle with that one till I finished the roll. The kind with white backing peels off easily.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2011 at 10:31PM
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Looks like a variety of methods here.

I have a xerox paper box full of tape in my basement - duct tape, painters tape, packing tape, masking tape, and who knows what other type of tape. And I even have lots of those electrical lock ties. So I think I will use a variety of tape on my containers. First it will keep me from having to go shopping. And second, it will help me figure out what works best for me.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2011 at 10:31PM
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The best tape to use is what you have on hand, the next best tape to use is whatever you can get on sale.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2011 at 11:26PM
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Trudi has it the rightest.... as usual

    Bookmark   November 25, 2011 at 2:52PM
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terrene(5b MA)

I agree with Molanic - no tape is the best tape! Duct tape is a sticky mess, and near impossible to remove after being stuck on for months in cold weather. I have used the usual clear packing tape which works well if you apply it to a clean and dry surface.

I use a lot of 2 LTRs and the tops stay on through compression, use salad boxes where the top snaps on, for milk jugs I punch holes and use a twistie, and use a lot of large cups and don't use any top at all with those!

KISS - keep it simple smarty. :) And spend as little money as possible.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2011 at 2:33PM
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Good idea Nan "I like using foil tape because it has a backing and I can "prep" it in advance" always looking for ways to get things done in advance.

However, I'm still unsure which to use, pipe cleaners or tape, maybe both. I'm really hoping to reuse these containers.

Terrence you said, "use a lot of large cups and don't use any top at all with those! " what actually is the purpose of lids? Therefore, can large planters boxes be sown without lids?

    Bookmark   November 26, 2011 at 5:08PM
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terrene(5b MA)

Hi Micki, I use 12-16 oz cups for spring-sowing the annuals, veggies, and herbs. Usually do those in early April. I line them up in plastic boxes and put those up against the foundation on the south side of the house. This is a warm spot that gets extra sun and even when we get a hard frost at night in April it doesn't reach this area, because the foundation holds heat thru the night. So I don't bother to put covers over those.

One of the purposes of covers or tops on containers is that will help the container to warm up in the sun, and it acts like a mini-greenhouse (also protect the seeds from weather, critters, etc). You just have to be careful, because if it's warm and sunny, a container can get too hot, and fry little seedlings.

Here's an example, these are Daylily seedlings, sowed in Cup o noodles cups and lined up in an old refrigerator drawer. Easy to water from the bottom when the cups are in plastic boxes.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2011 at 10:57PM
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lois(PA Zone 6)

I don't use anything; I just leave a 'hinge' at the handle and re-close the top after I finish sowing the seeds. The top usually leaves about a half inch gap, but I can live with that. I don't usually have much wind in the back yard, which would be the only reason why I would want to fasten the jugs shut.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2011 at 11:11PM
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quilt_mommy(5/6 Northeast Ohio)

I do as terrene does up there and sow my seeds in little plastic or foam cups. I prefer clear plastic. I usually have left overs from birthday parties or other family events during the year so I just hang on to them. I cut a few slits in the bottom and keep them in a ziplock baggie. I don't winter sow as many seeds as some of the people on here do though, so if you're going to do like a hundred containers it might get tedious opening and closing all those zip locks, but it works for me. :)

    Bookmark   November 28, 2011 at 7:24AM
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