JUST THROW AND GROW!
Re-seeding an abandoned murram quarry dug for the Standard Gauge Railway with acacia tortilis seedballs.
The process is usually done as a large-scale project with hundreds dropped in a single area at any one time. Provided enough water, adequate sunlight, and low competition from existing flora and fauna, seed-balled barren land could be host to new plants in as little as a month.
Seedballs have use in nearly any region where plants can grow: for reseeding ecosystems into areas of man-made deserts, avoiding seed eating insects and animals and protecting seeds until rains fall to soak the clay ball and stimulate the seeds. Seeds contained in such balls then germinate in ideal conditions for each climate/region.
seed bombing or in some cases aerial reforestation, is a technique of introducing vegetation to land by throwing or dropping seedballs. Often, seed bombing projects are done with arid or off-limits land (for example privately owned).
David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust large scale seedballing via helicopter with Seedballs Kenya
Aerial seedbombing of mixed highland Seedballs using an Air Tractor crop sprayer plane.
A huge round of thanks to Narok County Senator Ledama Olekina #33Senate, Farmland Aviation Ltd, Kenya Forest Research Institute and Kenya Forest Service for conducting this first ever large scale test (appx. 5,000 acres in S.E Mau) of aerial tree seeding in Kenya using both bare seed and our seedballs!
Onwards and upwards to growing more indigenous trees in Kenya. We will need thousands of kilos of high quality tree seeds in the coming years to reach the National goal of 10% forest cover by 2022, if you are interested in being trained in collecting or growing trees for seed (indigenous species only please) contact us today to apply.
Red Bull Amaphiko
Seedballs Kenya & The International School of Kenya
10,931,000 SEEDBALLS DISTRIBUTED SINCE SEP. 2016
An ambitious planting initiative was proposed by Mara Elephant Project partner, Seedballs Kenya, to distribute over one million seed balls in the Mara in one day! The proposal was generously funded by Diamond Trust Bank and MEP was asked to join as one of the key stakeholders of wildlife conservation in the greater Mara ecosystem and beyond.
Diamond Trust Bank, Mara Elephant Project & Seedballs Kenya
One Million Seedballs in a Day!
In addition to the seed balling, 3 other schools were involved, along with Kikunduku, in a separate tree planting competition. The DSWT provided 2.7 million seeds of 5 different dry land species that were handed out to 731 students to take home and plant on their farms. We will monitor their progress for a year at which point the winner and runner up from each school will receive a cash prize. The school with the highest average number of surviving trees per student will also receive a cash donation to be used toward a conservation-related project.
As this is the first time this concept has been trialled, we are uncertain of the outcome. However, if even 1 in 10 children actively participates in the competition and manages to turn even 1 in 10 of their seeds into a 1-year-old tree, we will have succeeded in creating nearly 30,000 trees (at less than half the cost of our existing DSWT nursery grown saplings). The trees will eventually provide forage for livestock and bees, wood and charcoal fuel (without depending on protected areas), shade and erosion control to name just a few benefits. More importantly, the exercise will hopefully inspire a new generation of tree planters.
The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
Photo courtesy of David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
Photos courtesy of David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
September 2018 - the lower branches of the sesbania have been pruned for fodder and the community has begun harvesting grass and sesbania seeds to sell to the neighbors.
We successfully dropped 50,000 acacia seedballs on a ranch where alot of charcoal making had been happening near Mile 46 in Central Kajiado in just 20mins!
On 25th October 2018, with approximately 450,000 seed balls purchased from Seedballs Kenya, over 300 students participated in the largest seed-balling effort in Kenya to date. The seed balls, coated in a thick layer of protective char dust, consisted of a mix of 4 different locally indigenous acacia species. This coating helps protect the seeds from predation and provides a small amount of nutrients to give the seeds within a ‘jump-start’ as soon as adequate rainfall triggers the germination process. Not all of the seeds will become trees, but even if only 5% survive, this will equate to over 20,000 trees, planted in the space of one hour. And 10 years from now, the students will be able to gaze across the fence from their old school and point proudly at the forest they created.
Together with the Rotary Club Of Voi doing some erosion control work and trying out an innovative method of reseeding in the Taita Hills with indigenous tree seedballs donated to them by some wonderful people from Istanbul. Working with local communities in Taita to regenerate badly degraded areas, stopping gully erosion and growing trees at the same time. Piercing bags and inserting Seedballs into each hole.
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LARGE SCALE SEEDBALL PROJECTS
SEEDBALLS KENYA OFFSHOOTS
5th August 2018 -
Kenya's first ever large scale
trials of aerial tree seeding.
In October 2018, the DSWT launched a new project aimed at inspiring school children to start planting trees. The two-pronged approach involved a large-scale seed-balling initiative in Chyulu Hills National Park (CHNP) and a tree planting competition involving 731 school children from 4 different schools also bordering CHNP.
Just a few weeks prior, a large wild fire caught on the edges of Kikunduku Primary School. Fortunately, the school was spared, however, a large area of the bordering Park was burnt. This presented us with the perfect opportunity to involve the students in a reseeding effort to help speedup the reforestation process and educate them on the importance of forests and their protection.
The competition was received with a huge amount of excitement from the students, and their teachers, who were adamant that they would not be bettered by their neighbouring schools.This specific project has been made possible by the sale of carbon credits by the Chyulu Hills Conservation Trust, which is a partnership between the DSWT and several other stakeholders in the Chyulu Hills, committed to protecting this incredible ecosystem.
Photos courtesy of David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust