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Volunteering at Scouts is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing at Scouts. Read more

Discover what this means

Make seed paper

Do some creative gardening and make your own seed paper.

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You’ll need

  • Spoons
  • A large pile of recyclable paper, such as newspaper, egg cartons, tissue paper and scrap printer paper
  • Blender
  • Warm water
  • Paper towels or cloths
  • Cookie cutters
  • Plastic wrap
  • Wildflower seeds

Before you begin

  • Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Additional help to carry out your risk assessment, including examples can be found here. Don’t forget to make sure all young people and adults involved in the activity know how to take part safely.
  • Make sure you’ll have enough adult helpers. You may need some parents and carers to help if you’re short on helpers.

Planning this activity

  • You may want to make the pulp before the activity is started with the wider group.
  • You should decide what seeds you’ll use. We’ve included some information in this activity on native wildflowers, as well as how to avoid invasive species.

Create your pulp

  1. Tear your scrap paper into very small pieces. A shredder might be handy here, but ripping it by hand works just as well.
  2. Put the paper shreds into the blender. Be sure to only fill the blender halfway.
  3. Pour warm water into the blender on top of the paper.
  4. Safely turn the blender on and blend the paper and water together until it reaches a thick, soup-like consistency. There should be enough water to create a smooth paste.
  5. Transfer the mixture into a separate bowl and stir in the seeds. Make sure not to blend your seeds!

Create your paper

  1. Split everyone into teams with a bowl of pulp, plastic wrap, a towel and cookie cutters.
  2. Everyone should place their cookie cutter on top of some plastic wrap, before spooning a thin layer of pulp into the cookie cutter. 
  3. Using the towel or cloth, press on top of the pulp firmly to soak up excess water. This also helps to spread the pulp out evenly in the cookie cutter. 
  4. Try to create a thin layer of pulp in the cookie cutter, as this will dry a lot quicker.
  5. Remove the cookie cutter shape, then repeat steps 2 and 3 to make as many pieces of seed paper as you want.
  6. If you aren’t using cookie cutters, you can simply mould the pulp directly onto the plastic wrap into the desired shape.
  7. Everyone should place their paper in a warm environment, where air can circulate around it. This'll stop the seeds from sprouting before you get a chance to plant them!

Decorate and send

Once the paper is dry, it can be used in lots of different ways, such as:

  • Creating a card for a seasonal event, such as a holiday, religious event or a birthday.
  • Creating gift tags
  • Writing positive affirmations on the paper and giving it as a gift

If you’re running this activity to commemorate the life of Queen Elizabeth II, you may want to write a letter to her family thanking her for her service.

Planting your paper

Place the seed paper into an empty bed or pot filled with potting soil and cover with about a few centimetres of potting soil.

Water the seeds regularly, keeping the soil moist until seedlings have sprouted.

If the seed paper shape is quite big, tear it into small pieces before planting. This'll help the paper break down into the soil.

See our example list below of wild flowers that are native to the UK and are also nectar rich. This means that these flowers provide food for native bees, butterflies and other pollinators across the UK.

  • Common Poppies
  • Corn Chamomiles
  • Corn Marigolds
  • Corncokles
  • Cornflowers
  • Oxeye Daisies
  • Wild carrots
  • Bluebells
  • Dandelions
  • Meadowsweets
  • Wild garlic
  • Evening Primrose

Non-native plants are plants that live outside their natural range. They’re usually introduced by people, as they’re not native to the UK. Most non-native plants are harmless, but 10–15% of non-native plants can become invasive plants that can harm the environment.

Invasive species compete with native species for food and habitat, and some carry diseases that harm local wildlife. Plants can be invasive when there’s no natural control mechanisms, when they spread fast, or when they suppress other species by competing for resources.

Non-native, invasive plants can:

  • Outcompete native plants by changing the habit or spreading so rapidly that they crowd out slower growing species, threatening their long-term survival.
  • Harm native plants by spreading pests and plant diseases, and competing for space, light, nutrients and water. This has a wider impact on other species that rely on native plants to survive, including birds, butterflies and other insects, and invasive plants could threaten the survival of rare plant species.
  • Change ecosystems and habitats and have other effects, such as reducing water flow leading to flooding.
  • Change the pH (how acidic something is) or the chemical composition of the soil or lock up nutrients.
  • Take a long time to become invasive. Many of the plants now considered invasive have been growing in the UK for over 100 years and for much of that time showed no sign of becoming a problem.
  • Be expensive to get rid of. It’s also very costly to restore degraded habitat if it can be done at all.

Some examples of non-native invasive species include:

  • Japanese knotweed
  • Giant hogweed
  • Himalayan balsam
  • Rhododendron ponticum
  • New Zealand pigmyweed
  • Floating pennywort
  • Floating water primrose


This activity gave people an opportunity to show how much they value the outdoors. Planting wildflower seeds is one way to help wildlife by creating thriving habitats.

Can anyone think of other ways to help local wildlife? People may think about building bird houses, bird baths, butterfly feeders or bug hotels.

Can anyone think of things that harm wildlife and their habitats? People could think about litter or pollution.

What can people do to help reduce the challenges wildlife face? Can anyone think of any other ways they can use waste materials that might end up in landfill to improve their local environment?

The activity also gave people a chance to help their communities. How does sharing wildflower seeds help others in the community? People could think about how having nice, wildlife-friendly spaces boosts wellbeing.


All activities must be safely managed. You must complete a thorough risk assessment and take appropriate steps to reduce risk. Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Always get approval for the activity, and have suitable supervision and an InTouch process.

Rubbish and recycling

All items should be clean and suitable for this activity.

The person leading the activity may want to make the pulp before the session begins.

Adults can take a step back or get more involved depending on how people are getting on. People could also work in pairs and help each other.

All Scout activities should be inclusive and accessible.