Seed balls, or “earth balls”, consist of a variety of seeds rolled within a small ball of clay. The idea of planting seeds that are concealed within clay originated in Kenya where aerial seeding was a technique commonly used for reforestation.
The old technique seems pretty farfetched, but organisations used to spread seeds from an airplane! But it soon became clear that this was far too expensive. Issues with germination, pests and seed predation by rodents or other wild animals meant that loads of seeds were lost. Due to the ineffectiveness of dropping loose seeds, the use of seed balls was developed.
Seed balls are their own tiny ecosystem, protecting seed from birds and critters as well as boosting nutrition to give the seeds the possible best start in life. With seed balls gardening is made super-easy, just simply place or throw them across desired area of growth and enjoy watching nature work its magic!
Using wildflower seed balls is an enjoyable and therapeutic activity for us to partake in, especially during these times when we’re stuck at home. Taking yourself away from the stresses of your everyday routine by using your hands and focusing you mind on something rooted in nature is an amazing way to unwind and ground yourself. Why not try standing in the patch of grass where you are scattering your seed balls, with bare feet and feel yourself reconnect with nature and your inner child.
As well as there being benefits for your mental wellbeing, there is also a very practical and important function behind wildflower seedballs. Wildflowers are a really important part of nature’s eco system and since we have lost over 97% of wildflower meadows from the 1930s up to the 1980s it is crucial that we start to rebuild these miniature havens and give nature a chance to recover.
Wildflowers also crucial to providing pollinators such as bees, butterflies and other insects with food, shelter and places to procreate (#SaveTheBees). The bees and insects then do their bit by transferring pollen which produces more seeds and therefore producing more wildflowers.
Wildflowers also aid the stabilisation of soil because of their complex root system, which means areas with a high volume of wildflowers can withstand large amounts of rainfall without all of the nutrients being washed away. Also don’t forget how much of an amazing food source wild flower seeds are for small mammals and birds during the harsh winter months.
We’ve created our own seedballs, so that you can experience the joy of growing at home! Lockdown is really tough for everyone so, as Spring approaches, why not turn those fingers green? Do you know the difference between your corn poppies and your ox-eye daisies? By the time your seedballs start to sprout you’ll be an expert. It doesn’t matter if you have a garden, yarden or even just a pot on your windowsill, seedballs bring joy to everyone.
Take a look here to discover more and get yourself a tin of Vauxhall City Farm seedballs, in time for the growing season.