Why is this something I remember my Granny doing? Am I cracked? and if not, do they need to be composted first? or can I just add them to the soil? Do they need to be tilled in or do I just scatter them on top?
They add calcium. Peppers love them. Put some crushed in the hole before transplanting. I also scatter crushed shells on top of the soil during the season. Helps deter blossom end rot for those veggies that are prone and also acts as a bright reflective mulch. I just start collecting shells, leave them in a ziplock bag on top of the fridge, then crush them with a rolling pin and sprinkle.
When my first tomato last year had blossom end rot, I started putting the eggshells around the plants, and I didn't have any more rot. I'm not sure if they have decided that blossom end rot is because of lack of calcium, but I hate loosing tomatos, so I'll keep doing it.
Next year for the peppers, also put some matches in the hole. They like sulphur.
They're a traditional means of deterring cabbage white butterflies from dumping their eggs - and hence caterpillars - on your cabbages. Scatter broken eggshells of about the right size around the cabbages, The butterflies see all the white bits and interpret them as other butterflies laying eggs (or dead bodies that laid days ago, and hence whose babies have got a head-start), and hence too much competition for their eggs, and they move on to lay elsewhere.
Re-reading, that's a lot of hences, but you get the picture.
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