In a bid to increase afforestation and reach the goal of planting 1.30 crore saplings this year, the Udhampur forest division in Jammu & Kashmir introduced ‘seed ball’ concept as part of the ‘Green Jammu and Kashmir Drive-2021’ that was launched in the state on Friday.
Launched at the hands of Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, the drive aims to regrow trees in all the degraded and denuded lands in the Union Territory within and outside forests. Started at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Jammu, Sinha planted a ‘cupressus’ sapling in the campus to mark the drive launch.
And as part of this ambitious drive, the concept of seed ball has been introduced in areas such as the Udhampur forest division. The plantation initiative is in accordance with the National Forest Policy, 1988 and the Jammu and Kashmir Forest Policy, 2011.
So how will the seed balls help with afforestation? Forester Rajnish Sharma explained, “Seed balls contain different varieties of seeds. These balls would be thrown in hilly and inaccessible areas."
Jammu and Kashmir: Udhampur forest division introduces 'seed ball' concept to increase afforestation, under 'Green J-K Drive'"Seed balls contain different varieties of seeds. These balls would be thrown in hilly & inaccessible areas," Forester Rajnish Sharma said on Sunday pic.twitter.com/ViTdNnyX3L
— ANI (@ANI) August 1, 2021
So how do these seed balls exactly work? Also known as earth balls sometimes, these are made of different types of seeds which are rolled together with clay and often enriched with humus or compost.
Using seed balls to grow trees and in gardening is relatively easy. These balls protect the seed once they are scattered in the soil. However, they do not begin to germinate as soon as they are strewn and have to get a good amount of rain. The rainwater helps to fully cloak the clay and the seeds which then helps in the germination process.