Seed bombs made from clay are pretty effective, because the clay serves to trap moisture, helping the seeds to grow.
Well, I didn’t find any statistics on efficacy, but seed bombs or “seed balls” have stood the test of time. They were most famously used in beautifying New York’s run down areas in the 1970s, and more recently have been somewhat brought back into popularity by Japanese “do-nothing” natural farmer Masanobu Fukuoka.
I looked, but wasn’t able to find any good data on how well people’s seed bombs have worked. I did find a lot of comments about an area needing a certain amount of rain for the bomb to work—moisture will help the bomb break open and the seed to germinate more easily, so a very dry area probably won’t be conducive to them working well. I did find a really cool list on guerillagardening.org (cited below) that gives instructions, pros, and cons for various kinds of seed bombs, so you might check that out for more information.
Not always. There are several trial-studies that show little or no germination from seed balls (also called seed ‘bombs’). Conditions (especially rainfall and surrounding soil) have to meet certain criteria for seed balls to work effectively. The link below is one example of a large-scale seed ball trial that had zero efficacy.
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