G233: Guerilla Gardening

Seed bombs

Seed Bomb Step #1:
Decide what type of seeds you will be planting. Make sure that you choose native flowers or trees that will survive with little intervention (i.e. hardy). Be careful to not introduce an invasive plant species into the mix that will spread and choke out natural vegetation in the area. Flower seeds that work well in a seed bomb are sunflowers, bachelor's buttons, poppies, and cosmos.

Seed Bomb Step #2:
Gather your ingredients. You will need 1 part seeds, 3 parts compost, 5 parts dry red clay, and 2 parts water. If you have rivers or streams nearby with red clay, gather from there and let dry. If not, you can buy dry red clay in a pottery supply store. Make sure to use red as it contains minerals necessary to the growth of the flowers. Other types of clay are sterile.

Seed Bomb Step #3:
Mix the seeds well with the compost.

Seed Bomb Step #4:
Mix in the clay with the seed/compost mixture until completely blended together. At this step, you could add a few teaspoons of cayenne pepper to the mix if you think you will have problems with ants or other creatures hauling off the seeds when the seed balls start to break down. If you are adding cayenne to the mix, use gloves to do the mixing.

Seed Bomb Step #5:
Add water, a bit at a time, mixing with your hands continuously. You want to get the mixture to almost bread dough consistency but not wet and sticky.

Seed Bomb Step #6:
Form the seed bombs. Pinch off a marble size piece of the mixture and roll between your hands until rounded and outer shell is smooth and has no cracks. This will protect the seed bomb from predators until germination. Continue to make seed bombs until all mixture is used up.

Seed Bomb Step #7:

Lay seed bombs in sun to dry. Continue drying for 24 hours until clay is hard and set.

I think I might make some to sell at our upcoming yard sale. The following day is my neighborhood area Art Walk. I think I could keep a sign up by my home that next day for interested art walkers. Right outside my door is the scorched earth of the railroad tracks. Many of us long for vegetation, but politicians have had crews remove any vegetation. I believe it is a sustained effort to make this area appear blighted so that there is more likelihood of declaring eminent domain. That is one theory anyway. The politicians named are just childish and petty enough to adopt such an approach.

I also like the idea of the provocative name, Seed Bomb, in this time of war mongering and machismo talk related to Georgia, Iran, Afghanistan, Iraq, etc.

Seed bombs first spotted at Dwell

Seed bomb image courtesy of Diana Settar's Flickr

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