Large Perma-Nest Plant Trays

Pros: durable hard plastic material, large size, easy to use and clean, stackable

Cons: no drainage holes (if that is important to you)

I enjoy jumping into gardening season even when it is too chilly outside to plant.  To gain a head-start on our New England weather, I start my vegetable and flower seeds indoors.  Since I plant a lot of seeds, I need plant trays.  My father introduced me to these Perma-Nest Plant Trays, and I have been using them for years.


Perma-Nest trays are constructed from a light green very durable hard plastic.  There are no drainage holes, but they are designed to stack (nesting inside one another for storage).  The trays are easy to wash.  They also come in several sizes.  This is the larger size tray measuring 22” x 11” x 2 1/2”.

My Experiences

When I start my seeds indoors, I pull out these Perma-Nest Plant Trays and fill them with yogurt cups.  I punch holes in the bottoms of the yogurt cups and fill the cups with a mixture of soil and perlite.  The trays are the ideal size for holding the yogurt cups.  I have also used the trays to hold Jiffy Pots, which are composed of peat pressed into circular or square biodegradable plant pots.  I have been able to fit up to 24 cups in a tray, depending upon size.

Every year I plant tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, summer squash, and cucumbers in the trays indoors.  I have also started pumpkins, eggplant, winter squash and a variety of flowers inside.

When the seeds are first germinating, I cover the Perma-Nest trays with clear plastic domes (sold separately).  If you don’t have the domes, clear plastic wrap works.  The object is to keep some of the moisture and warmth trapped in the tray … but not so much moisture that the soil begins to mildew.  Leave the lid or plastic wrap loose so that it doesn’t completely incase the tray.  Once the seeds begin to germinate, I remove the covers (or plastic wrap) and move the plant trays to my basement.  The trays sit under fluorescent lights.

These trays are deep enough so that they hold a good amount of water.  I have even gone on vacation for long weekends, filling the trays with water before I leave.  The plants are always healthy when I return.

The Perma-Nest tray is sturdy and quite durable.  They hold up to repeated use.  I have trays that are over fifteen years old and still look almost like new.  If left in the sun for a prolonged time, the light green color of the trays will fade and begin to look bleached.

The trays might stain if you leave leaves or dirt in them.  To wash the trays, just rinse them with water from the garden hose.  A sponge will loosen stubborn dirt.  When not in use, I stack and store the trays on a metal shelving unit.


 I have been buying Perma-Nest Plant Trays for years.  My garden started small and kept growing!  I will continue to buy these trays as needed.

I hope you found this review useful.

Enjoy the day,

Copyright 2014 Dawn L. Stewart

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