Take Planting Wildflowers into Your Own Hands!
The last dormant plants in the garden have begun showing signs of life now that spring has have officially begun; with wildflower seed bombs, you can capture this moment of growth at home, bringing the same bluebonnets and blooming redbuds that fill my walk through the garden into your backyard. Last month I shared tips for easily making hypertufa planters, which has me still in a creative space.
Creating wildflower seed bombs is an easy project to incorporate into your school, scout or family time. Spend a sunny day on the patio or take it inside for a rainy day around a table. The best part about seed bombs is they can be made and used at any time, particularly if you choose a seed mix with Texas wildflowers.
Texas native wildflowers
What Are Seed Bombs?
Seed bombs, also referred to as seed balls, are a handy way to plant seed on-the-go (sometimes referred to as guerrilla gardening). The concept is simple: create a mix that hardens enough to stay together, provides a growing medium and easily breaks apart once in its final resting place.
Recipes can vary based on the source, and I’ve tried quite a few; some will break apart easier than others, and testing out different recipes could actually make for a great field investigation!
We regularly make seed bombs here at the garden in our Arboretum Overnights programs, and this is the recipe we prefer:
- 1 part potting soil
- 1 part clay powder (also called potter’s clay)
- 1 part peat moss
- 1 part water; added slowly
- A sprinkle of wildflower or other seed mix for each bomb
Simply mix the three dry ingredients together so that they are equally distributed throughout the mix. Be sure to wear goggles or glasses and a dust mask during this process, especially with the powdered clay. Gloves aren’t necessary, especially if you’d like a nice clay treatment on your cuticles!
Adding Water to the Mix and Forming the Seed Bombs
Once you’ve pre-mixed the dry ingredients in a small container, slowly add water until it reaches the consistency of play dough. That’s all there is to making the mix!
Form the Seed Bombs like cookie dough.
Your next step is to shape the doughy mixture into small round balls like cookie dough. Then, create a small depression in the ball and add seed mix, reforming the ball shape around the seed.
Add wildflower seeds to the formed seed bombs.
Finished seed bombs just need a little dry time.
Give the formed seed bombs some time to dry before you use them. Drying them in egg cartons is great because it allows you to send seed bombs home with students or scouts, and they also make great gift packaging.
Other optional finishing options include specks of colored paper or rolling the seed bombs in additional wildflower seeds to give a polished look.
How do Seed Bombs Work?
Once the seed bombs are thoroughly dry, they are ready for gift giving, or immediate planting. Simply toss them in an area where you’d like the seed to grow – in your garden, along a fence line or even in a ditch.Over time, the seed bombs will break down due to rain and foot traffic. In no time, you’ll have a new garden space perfect for our spring and summer pollinators!
Director of Education