Seedpods: ensuring high survival rates in drone reforestation projects

Image source: Liliya Filakhtova
January 13, 2023

MORFO's reforestation method relies partly on the use of pods and coatings for planted seeds. These seedpods are also sometimes called "beads". Pods are filled with seeds that begin their germination inside their said pod. They are then released from the sky by drone thanks to a release system developed with partners.

Seedpods guarantee high survival rates

Compared to direct seeding, the seedpods have several advantages:

  • They offer a growing medium with optimal humidity and biological richness for the plant;
  • While using the drone as a release tool, pods offer a physical structure that ensures resistance to the fall damage and adequate burial in the soil to initiate the vegetation cycle;
  • They allow storage periods compatible with planting seasons in the different regions of the world.

When using seedpods, we ensure a much higher survival rate, around 80%, than other commonly used planting methods, such as direct sowing or hydroseeding. With germination activation staring directly in the pod, and with the integration of other elements such as micro-organisms, increases chances of good plant development. It should be noted that these pods do not only contain one tree or one plant per unit, but a set of elements that allow the growth of full eco-systems, and thus, ensure a complete, diverse and complementary revegetation.

Seepods contain locally sourced components

For various reasons, we use seedpods adapted to small seeds to this day. However, it is possible, when the planting scheme allows it, to use larger seeds, by creating a coating corresponding to a lighter protection, without any amendments.

Note that for every one of our projects, the basic components of our seedpods are always locally sourced for different reasons: support local economic networks, avoid risks of ecosystem disruption due to implantation of exogenous plants... In our projects in Gabon, for example, clay usually used in our seedpods has been replaced by kaolinia, a mineral composed of hydrated aluminum silicate. The exact composition of our seedpods, obtained through extensive research, is a property of our company. We keep it a secret.

Co-founder and Chief Operating Officer (COO)
Hugo Asselin
- Paris, France
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