Bee populations have been declining in North America for over a decade now because of an alarming phenomenon called Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) that’s causing worker bees to vanish from their hives.
Several potential causes have been proposed—mites, loss of habitat, lack of nutrition sources, and the overuse of pesticides to name a few—but the scientific community has not settled on a single cause for the phenomenon.
Bees are a vital part of our ecosystem as key pollinators. In the U.S. alone, almost a third of all the food produced is pollinated by bees. Without bees, you can say good bye to a lot of everyday things we tend to take for granted, like flowers, cotton, honey, coffee, cheese and more.
Chris Burley and Ei Ei Khin have come up with an ambitious solution to fight CCD—plant one billion wildflowers. The couple founded Seedle, a company that produces colorful seed bombs to make it fun and easy for anyone to join the effort.
Nutrition problems caused by the unavailability of pollen and nectar sources is believed to be one of the potential causes of CCD, and that’s where Seedles come in. The seed bombs are made from a mixture of wildflower seeds, natural dyes, compost, and clay. Just throw them on the ground and with the help some rain and sunshine, wildflowers that bees can use as a food source will start to grow.
To get the project off the ground, Burley and Khin launched a successful Kickstarter campaign in March 2014. Wildflower seed bombs containing seeds native to six regions in the U.S. and another version that grows herbs called “Thyme Bombs” are available on the Seedle website. A pack of 20 seed bombs costs $15, but if you’re feeling crafty, you can make your own using instructions from Burley and Khin’s blog.