Well, my sister's started saving eggs for this years round of confetti eggs. I complained last year about the masses of pastel paper left all over my pretty garden. This year we're gonna compromise. We've picked up a large bag of mixed wildflower seeds. Last fall I sprinkled wildflowers across area of the yard where I could see the soil under the grass. No other prep, at all. We have patches like this scattered all over the back yard.
Pretty! Just FYI, Scarlet Flax isn't actually a native wildflower, it is a North African species included by some companies as a wildflower. http://shop.wildseedfarms.com/Scarlet-Flax/productinfo/3226/ So if you're trying to squeeze more native habitat into a small yard, I would give that one the heave-ho and plant natives instead. But that's just me! I have plenty of non-native plants in my yard.
I'm not picky about native or nonnative. I just want more flowers, in more kinds. There's at least four other species that are just starting to bloom (plus the bluebonnets in the front). My theory (which is proving wrong in the case of flax) is that wildflowers have by necessity developed all the best tricks to attract pollinators.
Crazy thing is that I have yet to see a single pollinator on the flax. Bees, hummingbirds, wasps, beetles, ants, butterflies, they're ignoring it. I see them on every other plant in the yard, even ones that aren't flowering yet. Thankfully this mix includes a lot of perennials. I expect the flax to be overtaken by more valuable plants over time. I'll just enjoy the pretty until then.
Okay, I've bought enough materials for several colors of natural dyes, and my sister's agreed to use them. Flower petals are a nice thought. I might save petals for doing that next year. This year will be the remnants of leftover confetti from last year, and the seeds.
Funny story about blowing out the eggs. We found the instructions in a book for making hollow decorative eggs. (The confetti weren't so common here at that time) They included the line about poking a hole with a pin and then blowing out the egg. They neglected to say you could open the hole wider (in fact they emphasized the importance of a small hole) We spent most of a day blowing the egg interiors out through a pin hole. It takes a lot of pressure to get an egg yolk through a hole that small. Boy didn't we feel silly the first time we saw confetti eggs for sell with their convenient larger holes.
I love this whole idea. Not only is this a good activity for me to do with my four-year-old, I love how the playful action of egg-breaking will distribute the seeds in ways that I would never intentionally design--leading to opportunities for plant growth that I might never think of.
Just posting to show we really did follow up on this. We had wonderful results with the first batch of cabbage dye, the rest of them didn't turn out. All the other dyes were fantastic. Next year we'll experiment more with them. We did take the cabbage leaves and fry them up with sausage for a meal, so no waste.
In just a few minutes I'm going outside to start hiding all the confetti eggs.
We're coming up on that time of year again. I've got a good amount of wildflowers coming up from last years seeds. I'm planning on using up the rest of the seeds this year and probably buying more. My yard certainly looked much better the day after Easter, even not taking the new flowers into account.
I'm going to have to review what I need to save for dying the eggs. We were really happy with the natural dyes last year and so I want to do it again. It's more time consuming that a cheap kit, but other than the one failure of the later batches of cabbage, the colors were far richer than most home dye jobs.
The reason I mention it so early is that if you do confetti eggs the can replace hard boiled dyed eggs, You can just save the eggs you use in regular cooking, tap a hole on one end to empty instead of cracking in half. Start early enough and you won't feel like you're getting ready to sprout your own feathers by the end of the season. The same concept applies to gathering a lot of the materials for natural dyes. Start early and you won't need to eat or buy extra items.
Me neither Tracy
I was reading this thread thinking, I have been in Africa too long. What is a confetti egg? I get you are dying hollow eggs and filling them with seeds... But then what do you do with them?
Typically you smack other people in the head with them. It's a violent end to the Easter egg hunts. I think it's supposed to be good luck. The tradition comes by way of Mexico, so it's very popular in Texas. It's actually lots of fun, if you aren't too competitive about it.
I first made confetti eggs for my daughter to "explode" on New Year's Eve. We didn't know about cracking them on someone's head. Those eggs we'd filled with paper "confetti" that was from our hole puncher - lots of paper dots. We simply crushed the eggs in our hands and it does create a little flurry of confetti! I learned that these are a pain to clean up in the house, by the way...ha!
I MUCH prefer the idea of exploding wildflower seeds outdoors, so I love that Casie created this thread!
Evan said that one tradition is to smack a confetti egg on the head of someone you like.
Huh. Learn something fun and interesting every day. I bet the kids would love this. Presently we just decorate boiled eggs, which is the tradition I grew up with. My African neighbors are totally befuddled by this, but the kids love eating the egg. (Boiled eggs are a rare treat, the local diet is almost vegan for the poor here.). I wonder what seeds I could put in? Thanks for the idea!
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