Plastic bags are known to disrupt the environment. For instance, once in the soil, they slowly release toxic chemicals. When animals eat them, they often choke and die.
Kenya, this year, banned the use of plastic bags. But thanks to a 34-year old Kenyan, Teddy Kinyanjui, an innovative afforestation and reforestation method for developing seedlings without using plastic bags is in place. He is working in partnership with Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI), which certifies seeds.
Kinyanjui, a resident of Nairobi, Kenya, and founder of the charcoal business Cookswell Jikos Limited, has invented portable small seed balls for easy dispersal.
This photo gallery shows Kinyanjui’s ingenuity in using seed balls instead of the usual plastic bags to grow seedlings. Kinyanjui says he discovered that seeds require nutrition to grow. Seeds require nutrition to grow, and Kinyanjui has engineered a method of coating each seed with charcoal dust and corn or cassava starch to bind each ball to protect the seeds from prey, pests and diseases.
He says he has the capacity to make one tonne per day. So far, since the project’s initiation in 2016, about one million seeds of different species of certified indigenous trees have been dispersed throughout Kenya through partnerships with locals. His approach has a germination rate of 60 per cent.