Keep Wild Birdseed From Becoming Weeds
Almost all bird feed is seed, and seeds, by their very nature, sprout. In a different location, wild birdseed might grow up to be a wanted plant. But in our yards or gardens, we see sprouted birdseed as a weed. So, how do you keep wild birdseed from sprouting and turning into weeds? Here are a few tips…
Feed Zamzows No Sprout
Zamzows No Sprout Wild Bird Feed contains sterilized seeds. This means that they have been heated before packaging to kill the seed and keep it from germinating. If they fall on the ground they will not sprout into unwanted weeds.
Feed Nyjer Thistle Seeds (Don’t worry they aren’t really thistles)
Nyjer plant seed does not germinate and sprout in your lawn because the USDA requires imported Nyjer seed for birds to be sterilized for 15 minutes at 120˚ C (248˚ F) to sterilize the seeds. Nyjer is a favorite in the Treasure Valley because it attracts goldfinches and house finches.
Make Sure Your Seed is Fresh
Fresh birdseed creates weeds just as much as old seed, but the birds are more likely to eat the fresh over the old. This means that fewer seeds will land on the ground and grow into unwanted weeds. Ideally, you would feed out all the seed in a bag during the same season you purchased it.
Change Your Bird Feeder
Sometimes people don’t pay attention to the type of seed their feeder is made to hold and this means too much of the seed ends up on the ground. Be sure to use the recommended seed for the feeders you have, or consider replacing your feeders to fit the seed your local birds like.
Attach a “Catcher” to Your Bird Feeders
Seed catcher trays that hang under bird feeders can be helpful. Not only do these trays catch seeds that turn into weeds, but they also catch hulls that can make the ground under your feeders very messy.
Clean Up Spilled Seed Before it Sprouts
Ideally, seeds, hulls, and other debris would be cleaned up regularly. This not only keeps things looking tidy, but it also means fewer seeds are left to germinate and become weeds.
Pour Concrete or Add Pavers Under Your Feeders
If you can’t keep up with dropping seeds, then make it easy to sweep! A hard, flat surface makes sweeping and cleaning a breeze!