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How to Prevent Bird Seed From Sprouting

Adding a bird feeder to your garden provides character and entertainment. You, your family, your guests and even your pets can enjoy hours watching all the wild birds nibbling at the seeds in your bird feeder. There is even a chance that your bird feeder will get so popular that you can't keep enough seeds in it to satisfy all of your hungry avian guests. While that is a problem, it can also be a problem when the spilled seeds from your bird feeder begin to sprout and introduce unwanted plants to your garden. There are simple ways to prevent this from happening, however, and with a little effort you can keep your bird feeder and maintain a neat garden at the same time.

Things You'll Need

  • Rake
  • Shop vacuum
  • Tray and screws/glue
  • Black oil sunflower seed
  • Sunflower chips
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    • 1

      Rake the ground beneath the bird feeder once a week to clean up any seeds the birds scattered on the ground. This also rakes up and removes any newly sprouted seeds before they take hold in the ground.

    • 2

      Vacuum the area under the bird feeder weekly (or more often if you prefer) using a shop vacuum to clear the area of any spilled seeds that may sprout on the ground.

    • 3

      Attach a tray to your bird feeder to catch any seeds that are thrown out of the feeder by the birds. Make sure that the tray is slightly larger than the feeder itself (otherwise it won't catch the seeds) and attach it with screws or glue.

    • 4

      Fill your bird feeder with black oil sunflower seeds, as almost all birds love it and won't leave any behind to sprout. If you fill the feeder with sunflower chips (the hulless version of black oil sunflower seeds), birds will consume it so completely that very little seed will be left behind to sprout.