http://groups.yahoo.com/group/fukuoka_farming/

by Michiyo from Japan

I think that more experiments are needed to get the answer, but there’s a good possibility that seedballs are good as the seed storage if the clayballs are made airtight, crack-free made with appropriate clay–which we don’t know what exactly.

Didn’t someone bring up the topic of scattering the seedballs containing tree seeds in the Autumn for the land waiting for snow, so that the seeds are cooled down(some trees seeds need to be treated that way, I understand) for the right period of time and sprout in the spring? How did the experiment go?

I also wonder if keeping the seeds in the scattered seedballs(in nature) will prevent the seeds to go dormant. If this method works, it will be a great findings for wild plant&tree and said-to-be difficult plants growers. Could anyone share thoughts or ideas?

Last year in Greece, I heard that many of the small seedballs were melted because of the heavy rain in the winter time, but the big ones–which are disc-shaped and cotton containing remain in shape and sprouted beautifully in the spring time.

I also found the sacks of seedballs forgotten for two or three years outside. I opened the sacks and found some all moldy and rotton, but others were just sprouting or already growing in and among tiny bit of soil they found in the sack.

I always keep some seedballs in my house for samples–for sudden visiters interested in seedballs or taking photographs. When I carry them around, I pack them in some luxurious European chocolate box
with a ribbon(which I saved when I received those chocolates). Although I have never done it myself, it might serve as a gift in place of the canned plant-kit(is this just a Japanese thing, or can this be found anywhere?)

Anyway, the seedballs maintain good hard shape even after moving around in a box for so many days and left alone for many many months.

It is really important to make the seedballs crack-free(when they are completely dried). It is also important that the seedballs are completely dry before storing.

It is sometimes difficult to make crack-free seedballs depending on the kind of clay used and kind of seeds used. When the digged clay is not sticky enough, I mix with other store-bought ceramic clay.
You can test and compare the appropriate clay by making the clayballs with each sample clay, and sink them in separate cups with water, and watch how long the shape is maintained in water.

For the beans and peas, the seeds need to be soaked for the right lenghth of time, (we’ve talked about it before) and for the big seeds, like peaches and almonds, I have little experience–all the peach seeds in the outside sacks in Greece were so modly to the point they could not maintain the shape when I touched them. I started to wonder if the shelled seeds need to be in the seedballs.