11 May 2008

Seed Bombs

Another great idea from the folks at Just Seeds.

Seed bombs are described as "basically a simple way of sowing indigenous plants by making small balls consisting of dried clay powder, compost, seeds, and water."
There are many recipes out there, and here is one of them:
  • Combine 2 parts indigenous seeds with 3 parts compost.
  • Stir in 5 parts powdered red or brown clay.
  • Moisten with water until mixture is damp enough to mold into balls.
  • Pinch off a penny-sized piece of the clay mixture and roll it between the palms of your hands until it forms a tight ball (1 inch in diameter).
  • Set the balls on newspaper and allow to dry for 24 - 48 hours. Store in a cool, dry place until ready to sow.
I am reminded of a story my grandmother has told me, of a local schoolbus driver who sowed wildflowers along his route by tossing seeds from the window of his bus back in the 1960s and '70s. Many patches of those flowers survive to this day.

Having lived for a time in Florida, I feel compelled to emphasize the word indigenous in the above recipe. Non-native plants may be invasive! See kudzu for one alarming example of a non-native species introduced with disastrous environmental consequences.


gwensmom said...

I have been thinking about doing this in my city this summer. But now I am cackling like a crazy person at the thought of someone running around sowing kudzu seed bombs.

Helquin said...

Botanical terrorism!

Southerners -- and particularly Floridians -- are probably already familiar with the consequences of introducing non-native species, but I just used kudzu as a dramatic example. Here in southern Ohio, I'm still fighting lemon balm and something called "ice flower" introduced by the previous occupants of my house. Every spring for 7 years, I have pulled up whole patches by the roots, but the little boogers are persistent. In an untended lot, I'm sure both would choke out any native flora.

I'm starting to have similar concerns about black-eyed Susans, but they are (I believe) native to this area.