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Can Seeds Planted by Drones Spawn New Forests?

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Seeds that are specially coated to enhance their ability to take root.

A Spanish company is trying to offset deforestation by using drones to drop seeds that are specially coated to enhance their ability to take root.

Credit: Emilio Parra Doiztua/The New York Times

Spanish startup CO2 Revolution aims to use big data analytics and drones to drop millions of enhanced seeds for trees native to Spain's forests over inaccessible, deforested areas, to speed up the process of reforestation.

Since CO2 Revolution was founded in February 2018, the startup's founders have assembled a team of microbiologists, engineers, and software programmers.

Forestry engineer Jaime Olaizola expects half of the air-sown iseeds distributed this year to grow into trees, adding, “If 10% take root, it’s a success.”

The iseeds are covered in a clay coating that can contain plant extracts to ward off rodents, dried hydrogel to retain humidity, fungi to increase defenses, and Bohemian truffle to capture nutrients and stimulate root development.

From The New York Times
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