So, what is a seed ball?
A seed bomb is a quarter sized ball made of clay, compost and seeds which is used to casually plant milkweed and other native plants. They are often used in guerrilla gardening.
How do seed balls work?
Reseeding areas by the traditional method of broadcasting seeds poses several problems but seed bombs can remedy all those issues. For instance,
All of this adds up to increased germination rates and a self-sustaining system!
STEP 1: Gather Your Ingredients
STEP 2: Mix Compost, Clay and Water together
Start with 1 cup of compost and 1 cup of clay. Mix together in a bowl and add about 1/2 cup of water. The consistency should be just sticky enough to adhere the compost and clay together. You can add more or less water/soil to get this consistency.
Pro Tip: For me, 1 cup of both made 15 quarter-sized seed bombs. You can use this recipe to multiply it to make your desired amount of seed balls.
Step 3: Roll into balls
Just like making cookies! Grab enough clay mixture to make about a 1 inch in diameter ball.
Step 4: Add Seeds
Step 5: Reshape into a ball and allow to dry
Once you’ve added the seeds, roll the seed bombs in your hand to make sure seeds are tucked in nicely.
Lay seed bombs out on a newspaper or cardboard box and allow to dry for 24-48 hours or until hard. Avoid drying them on plastic to avoid mold.
After drying, you can also store the seed bombs in an airtight container in a cool, dry place until it’s time to plant. Mason jars or glass Tupperware work well for this!
How to plant your milkweed seed balls
When: You can plant them now while there is still snow on the ground so that the milkweed balls will still cold-stratify before Spring arrives.
Pre-stratified seeds, can be planted in the Spring after the first frost has passed.
You can also plant in the Fall once there have been a few frosts and there is no chance the seeds will germinate before Spring.
How: Simply throw the seed bombs onto bare soil. With a little water, plenty of sunlight and compost, your seed bombs will germinate and become a beautiful haven for Monarch butterflies!