Seed bombs (also known as seed balls) aren't always the domain of guerilla gardeners – they're actually a great way to propagate seeds, especially on a large scale or in poor soils. Using richer soil balls gives the seeds a head start and reduces the need for chemical fertilizers. Here's a simple way to go!
Buy or harvest your seeds. Buy or harvest quality seeds that you know will grow well over a large area or in poor soils, without needing too much attention. Don't choose any plants that will cause ecological or other damage such as weeds, invasive plants, or ones that have destructive root systems. If you're not sure, find out which plants are problem plants for your area or region; don't just rely on general information because some plants might be ideal in their local environment but a rampant pest in yours. Consider the entire habitat when selecting the seeds. Do you want seeds that will create an entire new habitat or do you just want seeds that will provide a few varieties of crops or plants?
Soak the seeds for an hour or overnight in a warm, but not boiling, weak seaweed solution or compost tea. Discard any seeds that still float – seeds that float are mostly broken or damaged seeds that won't grow or that will have weak genetic stock.
Prepare the seed bombs. There are four main ways to go about making the seed balls:Method 1. Purchase or secure some rich loam soil, or other clay type soils that can form a stable ball. The soil should be suitable for plants to grow in; make sure it's not too acidic. Shape the pure loam into a golf-sized shape ball using water to make it pliable and insert the seeds into each ball as you go, or sprinkle seeds in prior to shaping balls if easier.
Use semi-dry, living compost (not sterilised) and powdered red clay. Mix one part seed mix, three parts compost, and five parts clay. Shape into a round ball with your hands, adding enough water to make it pliable. It should have the consistency of cookie dough.
Alternatively, save up small biodegradable cardboard cartons, such as egg cartons or find biodegradable netting, such as old cotton stockings. Fill the egg cartons with the preferred soil and seed mix as above methods outline. Pinch the tips over so that the contents won't fall out. With stockings, you can fill them with a seed and soil mix, then twist, tie and cut them out much like you'd do if you were making sausages.
Mix sawdust on a ratio of 5 parts sawdust to 1 part seed with a rapidly biodegradable, non toxic and preferably food safe glue and a small amount of seaweed extract. The mix should not be wet, but moist enough to form a ball. It's better to make this version in small batches.
Allow the seed bombs to dry out for 24 hours. Arrange the seed bombs on a dry tarpaulin or on sheets of newspaper laid out in a sheltered area such as a shed.
Plant the seed bombs. If you have a plot with rows already dug for planting, install a ball every few feet (meters), (or as recommended by the seed producer), then cover over with existing soil.If you are looking to re-vegetate open space with grass or tree seeds, just throwing the seed balls will create a more random, realistic landscape, then bury them sufficiently to retain the moisture for the seed.
If you'd rather store the seed bombs for a bit, keep them in a cool, dark, and dry place for no longer than several weeks.It is best to use them when fresh though, as the seeds might begin to sprout!
Watch for the growth. If made correctly, the seedling will be visible within 2-3 weeks, or quicker in warmer conditions. The process doesn't really speed up germinationtime dramatically, but when the seedling starts growing it has ample nutrients directly at its roots so will grow quicker and more healthily.
If you use sawdust, check to make sure it is not from exotic, possibly toxic woods or pressure treated wood.
Don't do anything illegal or unethical. Many weeds have devastated landscapes that were originally planted by keen gardeners.
Don't use pure compost as the sole constituent of a seed bomb; it is too strong on its own.
Seed bombing is not always practical in dry, hot climates as the seed ball will dry or turn to dust without providing adequate long term moisture for the plant to live.
Seed bombing should not be done on land you don't own without permission.
Selling my Peanut Butter Business - A unique opportunity for you! - Are you looking for a side hustle and a step up into your own lucrative new business? I am looking for expression of interest for the right person to have the special opportunity to purchase the Peanut Butter aspect of Two Busy Bees Honey. Peanut Butter got us through last year when we had a very lean year for honey but now it's time for a special peanut butter loving person to take this over, make it there own and turn it into the massive success I know it can be!
Come join me in the hive and receive a $5 gift card code, to use next time you are in store! Bee the first to know of exciting new products and limited edition launches.
Sunshine in your day!
My beehives are located in sunny sub-tropical Brisbane, QLD and the bees enjoy copious amounts of sunshine all year round. As an organic minded beekeeper I carefully harvest the delicious liquid golden sunshine so you too can enjoy a little sunshine in your day. You can come for a fun tour of the Apiary (Brisbane based) and if you want a backyard beehive of your very own, I have bees for that too!