Seed bombs began as a fun and friendly tactic for greening abandoned lots in urban spaces, but are still a developing idea to be done in large scale. It involves throwing small seed ‘bombs’ from planes onto deserted areas that have suffered deforestation, to gradually begin to recover the ecosystem. This method not only allows the growth of more trees and plants, but helps combat the extinction of bees, indispensable beings for the reproduction of life on Earth.
Bees are responsible for the reproduction of most plant species and therefore are essential for life on earth; 75% of the world’s crops depend on pollination done by bees and other insects. Currently,bee population is dropping at an alarming rate of 30%-90% – this means that bees are facing a serious threat on the planet; some pessimist researches have even used the term extinction when describing the future of bee populations. Seed bombs could become an alternative that would help save the bees, as they could grow plant species that are more attractive to them, like wild flowers which are very rare in many regions and are preferred by insects.
Even though there are so many groups and organizations that are trying to raise awareness to save the bees, we still have a long road ahead. Jin-wook Hwang is a designer that has come up with the idea of a seed bomb to allow the artificial replanting of vegetation in areas that have become arid. The aerial reforestation process combines different techniques that allow the seeds dropped from an airplane to reach the ground under optimal conditions to grow. The capsules designed by Hwang are meant to be dropped from the air containing an artificial soil planted with seeds that are released onto selected regions.
Each seed capsule is made from biodegradable plastic and functions as a small greenhouse where the seeds grow at first. When they reach the ground, the capsule disintegrates without polluting the environment until it disappears completely, allowing the plant growth to take its natural course. The original idea came from a pilot who served in the Royal Air Force over 25 years ago, he saw that the aircraft used for war and bombing mechanisms could be used for more noble purposes. Therefore, the pilot tried to turn these weapons into an instrument that would help make the world a better place to live.
The ‘Seedbomb’ mission, which includes the large-scale launch of seed capsules from airplanes, is very complex, expensive and difficult to implement. But the concept of of these seed bombs can be replicated and carried out on a smaller scale; in fact, you could make seed bombs in your own home, and contribute to save the planet yourself!