Making native wild flower seed balls with the kids was a fun activity that ticked several boxes. First I knew the kids would want to get involved. Planting seeds and bulbs conventionally in the garden with mum has started to wear a little thin in the fun department so I thought this would renew their interest.
For me, I’m desperate to grow wild flowers. Yes , I’d love to pick a few as cut flowers, but more importantly I’m keen to grow a little environment where native wildlife can flourish, in particular, the bees. The ‘bee’ in 4 Blooms and a Bee comes from my personal desire to help fight the disappearance of bees. The bee population has been dropping rapidly for the last decade and although scientists think contributing factors include the proliferation of certain pesticides, fungicides and disease baring parasites, a decline in natural habitat, along with the loss of bees’ preferred wildflowers, is also a big factor. So as well as avoiding the use of chemical fertilizers and fungicides on my cutting patch, I thought making and throwing native wild flower seed balls into empty spaces in my garden would not only be fun but good for the bees as well!
So here is what we did.
5 Parts Red Powered Pottery Clay
2 Parts Potting Soil (We used Peat Free)
1-2 Parts Native Wild Flower Seeds (I used Pacific Northwest and Bee Blend from West Coast seeds)
1-2 Parts Water
Mix all the ingredients together, roll into small balls, let them dry for 2-3 days and then throw them where you want wild flowers to grow! It was easy.
Time will tell how well they work. The idea is that the clay will protect the seeds from predators like ants, mice and birds, the soil will give the seeds the boost they need to germinate, and the rain will give them the water they need to grow. Spring and fall are the best time to make and throw seed balls. Help the Bees! Give it a go!