S is for seed bombs

 

A few weeks ago, I posted an interview with Janna Willoughby-Lohr about the paper flowers that her papermaking business, Papercraft Miracles, has been creating. Today, I am sharing the rest of the interview, which is about the seed bombs that Papercraft Miracles produces. Recently, Papercraft Miracles produced half a million seed bombs for Lowes, which has been distributing them every Thursday as part of their free Garden to Go kits.

How did you get your start in making seed bombs?

I started making
seed paper first. The first batch of seed paper that I made was for our wedding
invitations in 2011. Actually 2010, because we mailed them out in 2011. I
thought that it would be fun to grow flowers in our wedding colors so we had
marigolds and forget me nots (blue and orange).

A couple of years after that, I
had a friend share a post with me on Facebook that she had seen in a kind of Pinterest tutorial. She said, “Hey, I bet you could make these!” And so, after
seeing that post, I was like I know that I could make ones like that, but I bet
that I could make cooler ones than that. 

The early seed bombs

Initially, I started making them, using
muffin tins. The mini muffin tins were little seed bombs and the bigger muffin
tins were bigger ones. I was actually placing dried hydrangea petals on the top, and they were really cute. But they weren’t in fun
shapes because they were just in these muffin tins. They took a really long
time to dry because I hadn’t figured out how to get them out of the muffin
tins. 


The first couple of batches I made sprouted before they were dry. It took
forever. 


Or I was trying to get them out of the muffin tin, and they would fall
apart. So there was a lot of trial and error and figuring out what worked best.
Once I started using different kinds of molds and cookie cutters and things
like that, I figured out how to make them in just about any shape. Which types
of molds worked better for certain shapes and which shapes were not going to
happen, no matter what we did.


We spent some time perfecting the art of making
high-end, luxury, very cute seed bombs. 

Most people who make seed bombs just
make little balls. We do make those when we are asked to make them. Most of the
time, our seed bombs are in cute shapes. Different colors… we add different
colors of pulp to kind of draw on them. I guess that they are luxury seed
bombs. At first, I made them all with different mixes of flowers. All of our seed bombs are made with a pollinator garden mixture. Then I
started making some with herbs in them so you could have a little herb garden.
Then we started making some with veggie seeds so you could have a little
vegetable garden. It just took off from there.

 


There are
definitely high end seed bombs. They are shaped like a buffalo with a heart in the middle.
We made little ice creams and they are two colors. There are a lot of good pictures on our website of those, too. We made owls and it has gold pulp for the petals. We
make Star Wars ones. We just finished making the Earth Day ones. They are
really cute.

 The seed bomb mixture is…


…bishops flower, black eyed susans, butterfly milkweed,
California poppies, cornflower, dwarf cosmos,  Indian blanket,
coreopsis, New England aster, perennial lupine, purple cone flower, purple
topped verbena, daisy, Siberian wall flower, alyssum, and sweet William pink.
They are native to North America and are things that would grow well in all of
the growing zones. There are some annuals and some perennials. There are things
that bloom throughout the season. You plant them now for this year, and the
annuals will come up throughout the season. The perennials will get their roots
established and then, next year, all of the perennials will come back and they
will bloom. It’s nice because it gives you this continuous garden.

 How do you get seed bombs to grow?


For the smaller
seed bombs, I just dip them in water and put them under the soil. If you want
to squeeze them a little bit and break them up and spread them out, you can do
that. You don’t have to. More of the seeds will probably survive and thrive if
you spread them out a little. For the bigger ones, like the buffaloes, I
recommend that you get them wet and break them into pieces. If you’re planting
in a pot, you want maybe one to one and a half inches of seed bomb for a one
foot pot. 

Once they start sprouting, if there are too many sprouts too close to
one another, thin them out a little bit. You plant them, keep the soil moist
until they are established, which is about four to six weeks, and then just
water normally. They want to be in a sunny spot. Most of them need a good six
to eight hours of sun a day. They grow easily. 

We’ve been selling them for
years. I’ve never had anyone write us or call us and say that they didn’t grow.
But people send us pictures of the flowers all of the time. They’re really easy
to grow. My kids shoved them into flower pots a couple of years ago in the
winter. I asked, what’s growing in here? Bachelor’s buttons blooming inside the
house all winter long. If a toddler can do it by accident, I’m sure that anyone
can do it. I gave them Easter seed bombs and they didn’t plant them and then it
was the end of that year. They were sitting around for six months after I gave
it to them. They shoved them into the planters. They didn’t take time to water
them or anything. The plants got watered normally, and they just started to
grow.


If you’re interesting in buying some seed bombs for yourself or for a gift, check out the Papercraft Miracles website. Even if you’re not looking to buy seed bombs, check out the website. It is beautiful, and it offers so many cool ideas to enhance your life with paper!





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