Frequently Asked Questions
Can I print on seed paper?
Printing on our seed paper is possible on most inkjet printers but the results vary depending on what type of printer and paper thickness is used. Doing a print head alignment with the seed paper is recommended.
Some printers do not like seed paper due to the uneven texture and also, some seeds might get dislodged. For this reason, we cannot be held responsible for any damage that might be caused. While we have had no reports of damage to any home printers from light use, heavy/commercial use on such devices could result in issues such as unwanted marks on paper and result in the printer needing a deep clean.
Laser printers should not be used as excessive heat can decrease the germination rates of the seeds or make them completely nonviable. We would not recommend using a commercial printer, unless they’re experienced with printing on handmade seed paper, as seeds can either become over-heated or crushed in the process. Dislodged seeds could also cause damage to their expensive machines or take a long time to clean out. The only commercial printing we would recommend is screen printing without excessive pressure.
What paper thickness should I choose if I want to print on seed paper?
If you have a regular inkjet that doesn’t mention printing on card in the specs, then you should still be able to print with it on our thin sheets but results vary on different devices. If your printer can print on card up to 300gsm then it should be fine printing on our regular sheets which are around 200gsm in weight but, as seed paper is less dense than normal card, it will feel more like 300gsm. We do not recommend printing on our thick sheets.
Can I print any designs?
We generally recommend not printing large blocks of colour as this can result in streaking on some printers. We do however have some customers who print full colour across a page with no problems so if you plan on doing this, we advise doing a test print first and keep checking the print outs to make sure they don’t start to streak.
What printer do you recommend?
As an eco minded business, we would recommend testing on a printer you already own or borrowing one. If you’re planning on printing on seed paper regularly and are searching for a new printer, our top performers have been the Canon ix6850 and the slightly more expensive Canon ip8750.
How should I plant seed paper?
To make sure your seed paper has the best chance of turning into beautiful flowers, be sure to write/print detailed instructions on it.
– Recommended planting time – Spring/Summer (when it’s warm/hot)
– Soak in water and tear into small pieces.
– Place pieces in a pot of compost and very lightly sprinkle more compost on top
– Water and keep the soil and paper moist (do not let it dry out but do not leave it constantly wet either) in a warm and light environment
– Once your small plants have grown, place pot outside or keep on a window that has lots of sun.
– Do not plant in nature – eco systems are fragile.
How long does seed paper last?
Our seed paper is made in frequent batches so is never more than a couple of months old when sold. The seeds inside the paper have a shelf life of around 2 years. Even after this time, some seeds should still grow from it but the germination rates will start to decline.
What flowers will grow from the seeds?
Our current seed mix includes Sweet Alyssum, Poppy, Baby’s Breath, Cosmos, Basil and Rudbeckia. Depending on the season and seed availability, a couple of varieties may not be included but there will always be a mix of at least 4 seed types.
When should I plant my seed paper?
We recommend planting in mid/late spring to early summer, basically whenever your seeds will have the most warmth and sunshine to grow into healthy plants.
Why hasn't my seed paper grown?
Planting results will depend on different conditions such as weather and soil/compost but we have found the following to be the main reasons why someone may have difficulty growing seed paper:
It is very important not to let your seed paper dry out as this will halt any growing and could kill any sprouting that’s already taken place. Saying this, you don’t want to keep it soaking wet either as this could make the seeds or any small and delicate plants (especially the stems) rot. You want your seed paper to be moist at all times while the seeds are germinating and then once the shoots grow, keep it less moist but not dry.
2) Planting too deep
Only a very very thin layer of compost/soil should be added over the seed paper. If in doubt, leave uncovered as no soil on top is better than too much.
3) Lack of sun/heat
We recommend starting the planting process indoors to make sure the seeds/seedlings are kept warm. A conservatory or greenhouse would be ideal or a sunny spot in a window that gets lots of sun.
4) Incorrect printing
It’s very important not to use any printing techniques that will crush or overheat the seeds. This is why we only recommend using inkjet printers.
Depending on soil temperature, it can take a couple of weeks for seeds to germinate.
Why can I only grow in garden/window settings?
While the seeds in our paper are non invasive, care should be taken when planting them. They are not UK native species and, though we will be offering paper with UK native seeds in the future, we will not recommend planting them in the wild just to be safe.
Unless someone is familiar with a certain habitat, there could be other plants there that the new seeds would compete with. If the other plants are stronger (eg lots of grasses) then the seed paper simply won’t grow or it could inhibit other more delicate plants from growing.
Our aim is to be as eco conscious as possible and we don’t believe in introducing any random seeds into ecosystems where they could compete with rare species.
Can seed paper be used on a Cricut Machine?
We have had a few customers report that our seed paper can be used in Cricut machines.
Can I lino print on seed paper?
We have had customers report that Lino printing does suit our seed paper
Can I letter press on seed paper?
Letter pressing can be used on our seed paper but the seeds in the areas that are pressed will most likely be crushed. For this reason, we recommend pressing as small an area as possible. Our seed paper does have a lot of seeds so the unaffected areas should still grow flowers.
How can I cut seed paper?
Our seed paper can be easily cut by hand and, for small amounts of paper, a drag style paper cutter with a sharp blade could be effective. For larger amounts of paper, a more heavy duty guillotine should be used.
GENERAL / MISC.
Can I send seed paper abroad?
Since the UK left the European Union, it is no longer possible to send seed paper abroad without a phytosanitary certificate. This is a lengthy/expensive process that would only really make sense if you are shipping tens of thousands of sheets. While we used to ship to the EU, since Brexit, we must abide by new regulations and only ship within the UK.
What is seed paper made of?
Our seed paper is made from a mix of seeds (Sweet Alyssum, Baby’s Breath, Poppy & Rudbeckia) and recycled pre-consumer cotton from the textile industry.
Where is your seed paper made?
We searched far and wide for the perfect paper and sadly most of what we found was either too expensive, not available in large quantities, didn’t have enough seeds in, couldn’t be printed on and/or just didn’t grow!
We decided to have a paper custom made for us to solve these issues. We work with a company in India who use traditional techniques and hand make each of our sheets from recycled waste cotton. They offer training to people in rural communities and have won both environmental and community development awards. We have the paper shipped by sea to avoid air miles, though when we are extremely low in stock and need an urgent shipment, we ship by air. Either way, we always offset our carbon emissions.
Do you offer wholesale seed paper?
Yes! We supply lots of small businesses with bulk seed paper. Please get in touch with your requirements for a quote.
Why does my seed paper feel thicker/thinner?
All of our seed paper is handmade so each sheet is unique and there will be some thickness variation.
The only way to get completely uniform paper is to have it machine made. We spent over 6 months (and a lot of money!) trialling and tweaking machine made papers from different paper mills around the world and none of them offered the germination rates we were hoping for. So we have stuck by our handmade paper as we would rather sell paper with slight variations in thickness than perfectly uniform paper that doesn’t grow.
Have any Questions? Drop us a line!
© Greenili Ltd 2021
Company Number: 13358223
Official (non-return/mailing) address: 56 Waye Avenue, Hounslow, England, TW5 9SE