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This is a badge bit (BB) that is part of the PEP curriculum.  Completing this BB is part of getting the straw badge in Foraging.

For this BB, you will be making 20lbs of seed balls/bombs!



To complete this BB, the minimum requirements is to make at least 20 lbs of seed balls/bombs:
      o at least an inch in diameter
      o can either be used immediately or quickly dried for storage (before the seeds germinate)
      o at least six different species in each ball/bomb
          - possible species:
              o nettle
              o dandelion
              o maple
              o mulberry
              o apricots
              o apples
              o black locust

To document your completion of the BB, provide the following:
 - A picture of the seeds in your mixing container
 - A picture of the finished balls on a scale showing the weight
 - A listing of the seeds you used
COMMENTS:
 
steward
Posts: 15194
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
4630
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Approved submission
I made these two days ago during the SKIP event.  It wasn't much harder making 20 lbs than to make 4 lbs.

Seeds were:
Wild harvested WI American hazelnuts
Mustard seed mix
White Dutch clover
Tillage radish
Common vetch
Field mint
Catnip
Yellow blossom sweet clover
Sepp grain
Seeds-and-hazelnuts.jpg
Seeds and hazelnuts
Seeds and hazelnuts
Clay-mix-showing-starting-weight-(seeds-were-added-after).jpg
Clay mix showing starting weight (seeds were added after)
Clay mix showing starting weight (seeds were added after)
Tare-weight.jpg
Tare weight
Tare weight
21.65-lbs-after-they-started-drying-a-bit.jpg
21.65 lbs after they started drying a bit
21.65 lbs after they started drying a bit
20210720_164416_resized.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20210720_164416_resized.jpg]
Staff note (gir bot) :

Nicole Alderman approved this submission.
Note: I hereby certify that this badge bit is complete!

 
Posts: 60
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Approved submission
Here is my submission for Making 20 Pounds of Seed Balls - foraging.straw.seedballs PEP BB:

To complete this BB, the minimum requirements are to make at least 20 lbs of seed balls/bombs:
      o at least an inch in diameter
      o can either be used immediately or quickly dried for storage (before the seeds germinate)
      o at least six different species in each ball/bomb

To document completion of the BB, I have provided the following:
 - A picture of the seeds in their mixing container
 - A picture of the finished balls on a scale showing the weight
 - A listing of the seeds I used

Clover (red, crimson, white, golden), paiute orchard grass, common vetch, field mint, sainfoin, cherry seeds, apple seeds
make_20_lbs_of_seed_balls_0740.JPG
A picture of the seeds in their mixing container
A picture of the seeds in their mixing container
make_20_lbs_of_seed_balls_0745.JPG
[Thumbnail for make_20_lbs_of_seed_balls_0745.JPG]
make_20_lbs_of_seed_balls_0747.JPG
A picture of the finished balls on a scale showing the weight
A picture of the finished balls on a scale showing the weight
Staff note (gir bot) :

Mike Barkley approved this submission.

 
pollinator
Posts: 228
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Here's more seed balls.

Included were

Golden clover
Crimson clover
Lambs quarters
Hairy vetch
Orchard grass
Sainfoin
Apple
Cherry
Dijon radish
Alfalfa
20220719_083820.jpg
Seeds
Seeds
20220719_103600.jpg
Me rolling more balls
Me rolling more balls
20220719_103504.jpg
Seed balls being weighed
Seed balls being weighed
20220719_103410.jpg
Rest of the balls being weighed
Rest of the balls being weighed
Staff note (gir bot) :

Mike Barkley approved this submission.

 
gardener
Posts: 1514
Location: Washington State
946
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Approved submission
Here is my submission for the Foraging - Straw - Make Twenty Pounds of Seed Balls BB.

To complete this BB, the minimum requirement is to make at least 20 lbs of seed balls/bombs:
      o at least an inch in diameter
      o quickly dried for storage
      o at least six different species in each ball/bomb - see list below

To document the completion of the BB, I have provided:
 - A picture of the seeds in your mixing container
 - A picture of the finished balls on a scale showing the weight
 - A listing of the seeds you used

My Seed Bombs contain:
             o birdsfoot trefoil (perennial)
             o rose clover (perennial)
             o common vetch (annual)
             o crimson clover (annual)
             o lambs quarters (annual)
             o Winter Rye (might be perennial)
             o Hairy Vetch (annual)
             o Sainfoin (Onobrychis viciifolia - perennial)
             o Braco white mustard from the abbey (probably an annual)
             o cherry (perennial) - pushed 1 into each seed ball while forming
             o apples (perennial)

I put the seed balls on the scale in two batches
- 11# 3.7 oz
- 11# 15.8 oz
- TOTAL: 23 pounds

To document your completion of the BB, provide the following:
 - A picture of the seeds in your mixing container
 - A picture of the finished balls on a scale showing the weight
 - A listing of the seeds you used
1.JPG
seeds in mixing container
seeds in mixing container
2.JPG
11 pounds 15.8 ounces
11 pounds 15.8 ounces
3.JPG
11 pounds 3.7 ounces
11 pounds 3.7 ounces
4-mixing.JPG
mixing seeds into clay/manure mix
mixing seeds into clay/manure mix
Staff note (gir bot) :

Someone approved this submission.

 
Posts: 175
Location: Tacoma WA
28
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Approved submission
Beginning mix:  1 part compost, 1 part dampened coconut coir, 1 part sloppy clay, 1 part seeds

Seeds including crimson clover, white clover, lupine, carrot, onion, squash, dill, radish, sunflower, marigold, amaranth, cucumber, chard, kale, daikon, dandelion, mint,  and a bunch of unlabeled  or old seeds
plus 4 perennials: rudbeckia, echinacea, lilac, wild lettuce

PEP Foraging Straw Seedballs - 20 Pounds of Seed Balls; at least an inch in diameter, can either be used immediately or quickly dried for storage (before the seeds germinate), at least six different species in each ball/bomb
May 15:  22 pounds!


What did I learn:
~ Getting the mix just right took trial and error, too much water, then added coconut coir, and finally added more clay
~ Squash seeds did not like to stay mixed in
~ Smaller balls, laid out in a single layer dry before sprouting,
~ Laying out on bricks helped with the drying process too.
~ Where ever you work, wipe your hands, and dry your seed balls, you will spill seeds. My front yard might be colorful next year.
~ Use a pinch the size of a Hershey Kiss. Maybe a small cookie scoop would help make them even.
~ Rolling them in my hands like cookie dough makes them fall apart. Needed to swirl like dice.
~ (5 hours + 4 hours) x (4 pounds + 22 pounds) x $10/hr = $3.46/pound
seed-ball-ingredients.jpg
1 part compost, 1 part damp coconut coir, 1 part sloppy clay, 1 part seeds
1 part compost, 1 part damp coconut coir, 1 part sloppy clay, 1 part seeds
seed-ball-mix-adjusted-with-more-sloppy-clay.jpg
After 2 days the mix had dried out a bit. I added more sloppy clay and it holds together nicely.
After 2 days the mix had dried out a bit. I added more sloppy clay and it holds together nicely.
May-16-mid-day.jpg
Mid day, about 90mins of rolling. So much faster and more even
Mid day, about 90mins of rolling. So much faster and more even
May-16-total.jpg
End of day, the first ones were dry enough to stack in the bowl, wetter ones were left on the blue rack.
End of day, the first ones were dry enough to stack in the bowl, wetter ones were left on the blue rack.
May-16-22-pounds.jpg
May 16 22 pounds in 4 hours.
May 16 22 pounds in 4 hours.
Staff note (gir bot) :

Nikki Roche approved this submission.

 
master gardener
Posts: 2197
Location: Carlton County, Minnesota, USA: 3b; Dfb; sandy loam; in the woods
1080
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Approved submission

To document your completion of the BB, provide the following:
- A picture of the seeds in your mixing container
- A picture of the finished balls on a scale showing the weight
- A listing of the seeds you used



I'm in the process of making two different sets of seed balls to help remediate a sandy hillside that's not recovering from some excavation that was done three years ago. This is the first set, tomorrow I'll submit the second.

The most prevalent seed in this mix is white clover, second is my wheat grex. After that I've added a pack of bumblebee mix (pictured) as well as a Mexican herb - Papalo (Porophyllum ruderale).

I mixed about six lbs of seeds, five lbs of clay, and the balance was compost. I'm not sure I got enough clay into the mix for them to dry and store well, but they held their form long enough to get them into the field. The balls shown on the scale was about 3/4 of the mix, but I couldn't stack more on this 1020 tray.
flowers.jpg
[Thumbnail for flowers.jpg]
Seeds.jpg
[Thumbnail for Seeds.jpg]
20LbSeedBalls.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20LbSeedBalls.jpg]
Staff note (gir bot) :

Nikki Roche approved this submission.

 
Christopher Weeks
master gardener
Posts: 2197
Location: Carlton County, Minnesota, USA: 3b; Dfb; sandy loam; in the woods
1080
6
forest garden trees chicken food preservation cooking fiber arts woodworking homestead ungarbage
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OK, second set of seed-balls for my sandy hillside are out and both are being watered in.

This batch was a big sack of sanfoin seed, followed by a lb of 'beneficial bugs mix' including 17 flowers and then an unsorted (three species) mix of winter squash, and miner's lettuce.

I did a better job with the clay ratio this batch.
Seeds2.jpg
The mix!
The mix!
seedballs.jpg
I was a little more careful than yesterday to keep these even and stack them right since it's hard to get 20 lbs into one tray.
I was a little more careful than yesterday to keep these even and stack them right since it's hard to get 20 lbs into one tray.
leftovers.jpg
After filling the tray in the picture above, I had this leftover which I'm just distributing around some apple trees instead of making balls.
After filling the tray in the picture above, I had this leftover which I'm just distributing around some apple trees instead of making balls.
Staff note (gir bot) :

Nikki Roche approved this submission.

 
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