Sunday, April 22, 2012

Making Seedballs

I'm making seedballs to throw into the main central part of our property. Right now, it's nearly a monocrop of "Bastard Cabbage" as well as "Stork's Bill", a purple flower ground cover. I've collected red and yellow clovers, buckwheat, millet, sunflower, legumes, chia and an assortment of wildflowers. Bees and birds will love these, as well as Gil, our tortoise!
Mixing the seeds.
As our dirt is high clay, I dug up a large bucket full, and mixed in organic compost. Then I added enough water to moisten it through and mixed in the seeds.
Adding the seeds and mixing them into the soil mix.
It's a bit like making cookie dough! 
Each ball is made by scooping the mix and shaping it into a round ball. 
It's important to let them dry. They need to dry quickly, so that the seeds don't start to germinate within the ball. I placed them immediately into cardboard trays in the Sun.
All photos by Steve Niles.
Once dry, Steve threw them into the center of the monocrop. I spent some time in there hacking out dips between the rows, so the balls could land easily.
Finished Seedballs.

A bit too much compost was mixed in, the balls were crackly, but Steve had a blast throwing them! Usually, the point of seedballs is to throw them, let them land and wait for rain. I cheated and watered the last couple of days, but I know I didn't hit them all. Rain is coming in a few days, fingers crossed!

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