Clay soil is the bane of many gardeners, but there's at least one good thing you can do with the sticky stuff—make seed balls. The process is simple and fun as patting mud into delectable fantasies or rolling modeling clay into snakes. Making seed balls entails mixing a few easy-to-grow seeds with pinches of soft clay and shaping little balls.
Seed balls make it easier to plant seeds, especially if you're sowing small seeds that are difficult to see and handle. Coating seeds with clay also protects them from being washed away by rain or eaten by birds. Use one finished seed ball per small container, or use the balls to plant clusters of annuals in a garden.
What You Need
- Fresh clay soil or dried clay
- Plant labels, optional
- Drying rack
Step 1: Create Clay Mixture
If you don't have clay soil in your area, start with dried clay from a local ceramics supplier or online source. Mix two parts dried clay with one part compost. Add enough water to make it a soft and malleable consistency.
Step 2: Mix Clay Thoroughly
Mix the clay with your hands or stir it until it is the proper consistency for rolling. If your clay is too runny, add dried clay. If your clay is too stiff, add water.
Step 3: Roll Clay Balls
Roll the soft clay between your palms to form walnut-sized balls (about 1 inch in diameter). Place finished balls on a tray.
Step 4: Press In Seeds
Press 20-30 seeds into each clay ball. Reshape the ball, working the seeds into the clay. Set the balls on a rack to dry for several days in a warm, airy place. Store away from heat and moisture. Add plant markers to seed ball locations if desired.