As we continue with our upwilding project at Cupsmith HQ - to attract and support more wildlife - we've turned our attention to our scraggedy-raggedy fields. Luckily, my niece is a qualified ecologist and specialises in British wildlife so she has been our constant source of knowledge and above all enthusiasm.
When I bemoaned our scruffy, sadly-ignored fields (running Cupsmith is all-consuming as you can imagine) she immediately said that far from being scruffy wasteland, they're actually the perfect habitat for the wildlife of the area. I was thrilled! The perfect excuse to worry no more, and just build on the scruff! And that's what we've been doing. So having built our Cupsmith wildlife hotel and sanctuary, we've now been sowing wildflowers in a brilliant, entertaining way.
We've been making seedballs, or seedbombs as some people call them. I spent a happy few hours making these with the children and it couldn't be easier. All you need is:
There are lots of 'recipes' on the internet, but here's our super-simple version.
1) Take a blob of air drying clay and flatten it with the palm of your hand. Small hands like doing this a lot as it's like playdough.
2) Take a generous pinch or two of compost, along with a sprinkle of wildflower seeds.
3) Squish it all together.
4) Roll it into a ball.
5) Leave the seedballs to dry overnight.
So this has all been looking rather lovely so far? And so far it was. Well just to remind us all that real life isn't always as lovely as it looks on social media feeds, the next morning we then had to go and throw the seedballs in the field. It was cold, raining and windy! Here are the children before school, with me shouting 'hurry up, throw the seedballs, it's freezing....and you'll be late for school!'
The rain is actually ideal for the seedballs because it washes away the clay and the seeds settle well in the soil. So when you make yours, do watch out for a bit of rain and get throwing!
The super handy trays are by our very stylish friends Thornback & Peel.