One of my favorite Easter traditions is from my husband’s family. Back in Ohio, they lived on a several-acre property that spanned into the woods. Every Easter, all of the aunts, uncles and cousins would come over for an Easter egg fight. Each family would bring several dozen eggs and come covered from head to toe, complete with helmets.

After the egg fight, everyone would wash off and enjoy Easter dinner. We would then pick up the eggshells left in the yard and save them for repurposing later. Whether you engage in an egg fight of your own or have leftovers from Easter egg dyeing, think before you toss them out. Consider some of these ways to put the shells to use.

• Whiten your load. Use this with undyed eggshells only. Place the shells in a muslin cheesecloth bag and toss into your washer along with your whites. The shells will help to prevent the soap deposit that can gray your whites over time.

• Boost your potting soil. Break shells into pieces and mix with potting soil. The shells will add nutrients to the soil and help to provide drainage as well.

• Protect your garden. Sharp eggshells scattered around your garden will help to deter slugs and snails. Some people say eggshells also help to deter cats. Sprinkle them in your yard in places the cats tend to frequent. Apparently, they will hate the feeling of the eggshells so much that they will stop coming back.

• Scrub your pots and pans. Crush up the shells and mix with soap. Use them to unstick stuck-on foods. Just make sure to strain the shells before they go down your drain. A small amount of eggshells down your disposal may be OK, but larger amounts can clog the drain.

• Fertilize your plants. Before planting, add tiny bits of eggshells to the holes. The calcium and other minerals in the shells will give your plants a boost. Keep it up by sprinkling more eggshells around the base of the plants every other week.

• Water wisely. Another plus for the plant section: Watering with eggshells can boost your indoor plants. Wash the eggshells and then place them in the bottom of a jar. Crush lightly with the bottom of a wooden spoon. Then, pour boiling water over the top, covering the eggshells completely. Allow the mixture to sit overnight. Then, strain the eggshells before using the water for your plants.

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