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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I live in a small rural town and in town there are a number of old empty lots as well as a large field next to the old middle school that closed up 5 or 6 years ago (new one was build at another location) so I was thinking about doing some guerrilla seeding in some of these locations.

My question is...something like clover, will it do ok by just broadcasting the seed over top of the grass that is currently there or does the soil need to be disturbed? Same with wildflower seed.

Any other ideas for suitable bee friendly plants that could be planted in such a manner?
 

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I like your idea WVa, or at least where your heart is. Just make sure you arn't trespassing on private property. The only thing worse than trespassing, would be conversion of property (your planting). And to add insult to injury, now the other person's land is full of your bees! Not a good way to make friends :)

But anyway, like I said, on the right plots of abandoned land, with the right seeds, I like where your heart is.

You just need to make sure it's cheap seeds of some kind. Keep in mind that it's likely to get mowed over, or destroyed.
 

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I like it! Instead of Johnny apple seed, you will be Johnny honey clover! If it is abandoned school property I'd say go over with two garbage bags. One with seed and lime and the other empty. If anyone asks you can say you just wanted to pick up the litter left around the old school. You might even get a kudos!
 

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I like the idea also, So one of you seed guys tell us what might actually grow that way, and the best time of year to plant it....
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah...I would be very careful in the properties I seeded. There is also several area of land that are owned by the town and/or county that go completely un-used so I figured even something like some wildflowers along the edges and some dutch clover in the middle areas wouldn't hurt. Heck...most people around here have lots of the dutch clover in their yards anyways. I know I do and I plan to seed even more. I know it is not the best bee clover but it stays low to the ground and survives most mowing efforts and I see bees on it at my house pretty often.
 

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I think you have a great idea but not as a Guerrilla. You have the desire to make a difference and perhaps a golden opportunity. Go to city hall and tell them what you want to do. You can get your name out there as a local beekeeper and perhaps get some swarms because of it. You can find out who owns any vacant lots at city hall as well. Try to get permission from the landowners to put out some seed. You may be able to talk with public works folks and find some places they will let you plant. Roadsides can be town, county, or state and you may find some places to put out seed with their help. Let’s talk plants for a bit. The dutch clover will take care of itself unless everyone mows their grass at the same time. You may be able to broadcast alsike clover or white sweet clover in the grassy area. Coneflower will probably work ok as well. Milkweed is easy to spread around and thistle is great. We really should figure out what will come up in a neglected area. I have an area on my property that I quit mowing I’ll throw out some seeds and see what comes up next year. If it does not have to be field sumac would be great. If buckwheat will come up that is great too. I’m rambling, sorry!
 

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I have had my Guerrilla gardening experience. It didn't yield much but it was fun.

I would work both sides... The legal route and the Guerrilla Gardening side. One will be good for your repetition, the other will be good for your spirit.
 

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Adverse possession folks. In 21 years, you own that property. ;)

Around here, we try to find ways to keep Canadian thistle from seeding down. ;)

Just toss handfulls of various seeds. Not all will germinate, but you'll get some that seed down ok.
 

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I threw some sweet clover seed in some road ditches this spring. It came up and is blooming right now. It will probably reseed itself for some time...

I will probably get a couple pounds of some other seed next year. The ditches get mowed at most twice a year around here. Usually it is more like once every other year if at all.
 

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For your purposes, I like white clover. It stays fairly short, so is less likely to be mowed. Heck, even if it is mowed, that shouldn't hurt it. I plant white clover in the dead of winter... just toss it around & let the freezing/thawing do the actual planting. It comes up gangbusters in the spring from that.

I got some goldenrod seeds & tossed them along my roadside. They did OK. Watch that stuff though because it gets tall.

Robert in the hills of Tennessee
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Yeah...white clover is likely what I will plant as far as clover is concern just for the reasons you mentioned. I know it is not the best clover source for bees but better then nothing and that stuff grows all summer around here...even with it being so hot and dry that past couple months. At least that way there is a little something out there for the bees to do. I just need to find a source for the seed in bulk. Not sure if the local feed store would have white clover or not...I don't see it being useful in agriculture as a hay or forage crop so I don't know that they would carry it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'm afraid it takes a bit more than trespassing on someone else's land, planting some seeds, and walking off.
I want to say there is something about a using the land as your own and after 10 years you have to post in the local paper for so long and if nothing happens you can apply to the courts to have the land transferred to you as the new owner. Thats in WV anyways.
 

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My other thought on this matter is what can I plant ,in this fashion, that will yeild something for the bees in this dearth between the summer and fall flows? After clover and alfafa, and before goldenrod and aster?
 

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I think you have a great idea and instead of guerrilla planting, you should approach the town or city council with the idea of planting for insects and birds on vacant lots. Not only is this a green approach but it could save the township and tax payers money, or at least the illusion the tax payers will save money because they will spend it no matter what, its not there money. But to the point, this is green cause they would not need to mow these lots, or mow as often and this save fuel from being burned which costs money and pollutes the air. If you can talk them into it, you could be appointed as the person who picks the seed to be planted, and best of all the tax payer pays for the seed, not you. I have seen pictures of horrible looking vacant lots in big cities with before and after pics with all the butterflies and birds after they turned a ghetto lot into a small piece of paradise. They would gain popularity with the public and help insure there seats on council, that a good selling point to get there approval.

Brilliant.
 

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I want to say there is something about a using the land as your own and after 10 years you have to post in the local paper for so long and if nothing happens you can apply to the courts to have the land transferred to you as the new owner. Thats in WV anyways.
I get your point. Just keep in mind that you have to actually believe that it's your land, and no one else's due to continuous, uninterrupted usage. In most states, you don't have to post anything in the paper. Once you have been using the land for the statutory period of time, it's yours.

But, it's usually 20 or 21 years until it's yours. It's usually 7 or 10 years if you have color of title, meaning you have a title to the land but it isn't valid.
 

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In my experience, getting goverment involved in anything is trouble. For example, you may be responsible for bee stings (I understand they won't have a leg to stand on, but who needs that aggrevation), improving a lot which means more taxes for owners. Who knows what someone will try to bother you about. If your plan is to just broadcast some seed, go in and throw it around and walk away while whistling a tune. "No good deed goes unpunished"
 
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