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Seed Ball ingredients...  RSS feed

 
Chris Kott
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Location: Toronto, Ontario
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I would love to know what effect altering the composition of the seed ball mix would have in specific cases. Would biochar be a good additive to the mix? I was thinking specifically of the possibility that it might be beneficial to provide more air, or more surface area for beneficial bacteria to colonize, or even something of a granular structure to aid in eventual percolation of water into the ball and the egress of the roots from it.

Another question I had was to procedure. I have seen a lot of seedy clay dough material being made, but nothing regarding making clay and organic fertilizer pellets formed around individual seeds. Is anyone doing this? I mean sifting out the clay and compost (and perhaps biochar or sand?) to a homogenous powder, leaving it dry, and either sifting it onto lightly moistened individual seeds, or placing those same lightly moistened seeds down in a container on a layer of the sifted mix, to be tossed and coated that way. One could conceivably even alter the coating mix to favour different properties different depths into the balls.

I think this approach could allow us to tailor to the specific needs of individual species who may be finicky germinators, but also to physically increase the size of otherwise miniscule seeds that we either chronically overplant, or are constantly thinning out to stave off overcrowding due to their size and the corresponding difficulty in handling.

My last question has to do with the liquid component. Would it help or hinder to innoculate the liquid component in this process with Lactic Acid Bacillus, or with raw milk, or would that cause problems? Or would this be just a peachy keen thing to do on the homestead level if you're scattering them in short order, but would cause the pellet to break down in the medium to long-term, and so not be very useful in a commercial setting? This is based on some of what I've recently read in posts on threads to these fora regarding the beneficial effects of treating degraded pasture with raw milk whey or a diluted raw milk application. If the mechanism which seems to be at work is the introduction of beneficial bacteria to otherwise sterilized ground, it should stand to reason that a seedball mixture that incorporates the same live biotic elements would have a similar beneficial effect.

-CK
 
Chris Kott
Posts: 823
Location: Toronto, Ontario
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As an addendum, I think a seed mix that fits in with Paul's article on polycultural lawns would be useful. I likewise think that a crazy lawn alternative, like a native prairie polyculture, something that can feed critters, provide critter shelter, look ornamental, and act as a great cover for soil-building. Or a green manure polyculture, pollinator mix, pasture forage mix suitable for grazers, another tending towards woodier stems and things browsers would prefer, maybe a mix that comprises the complete vegetable contribution of a forage-fed chicken diet?

I think that a good thing to keep in mind is that any themed mix that you can come up with can have not only different regional flavours, but can easily be subdivided into at least two groups based on varying sun/shade conditions.

-CK
 
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