Introduction: Sonic Seed Sower

Picture of Sonic Seed Sower

Sowing tiny seeds in neat rows can be a tedious process. Often you will oversow them then need to heavily thin things out later. This is wasteful and inefficient.

There are lots of commercial devices to help but they can be expensive and often don't work very well.
I came up with this after seeing a similer device in a catalog for $80 and thought I could make it cheaper.

You will need:

1) A Sonicare or other sonic type toothbrush (You may be able to use other types of electric toothbrushes I just happened to have a Sonicare)
2) A single slat from a vinyl mini blind
3) A rubber band
4) Scissors

Step 1: The Parts

Picture of The Parts
Once you have what you need you can proceed.

Cut the slat about 8 inches longer than your toothbrush.
Cut one end to a point and gently crease the slat into a “V” shape for about half its length.
Attach slat to toothbrush with rubber band.


Step 2: Using Your Device

Picture of Using Your Device
To use the sower you place some seed in the channel and turn the brush on.

The seed will march down the "V" like ants at a picnic. 
By adjusting your grip (pinching down) on the “V” shaped part of the slat and adjusting the angle you have a huge measure of control.


Step 3: UPDATE-Adding a Bulk Hopper

Picture of UPDATE-Adding a Bulk Hopper

Someone said that they would like the device to hold larger amounts of seed so they wouldn't have to reload as often.

After some pondering (and a raid on the junk drawer in the kitchen) I came up with this.

I got a small funnel, cut off the handle and taped it to a piece of mini blind slat.

You could use hot glue also.

I drilled a small hole, in this case 5/32",  in the funnel to allow it to slip over the metal vibrating tip of the toothbrush.

A litle bend in the mini blind slat and a zip tie, done.

click thru the images below for detail.


bencher (author)2014-05-28

Thank you for posting this instructable about your Sonic Seed Sower. I made one except I used a piece of card stock that I taped with wide scotch tape. I found it really fun to use even though I only sow a few feet of row at a time

alsearsa (author)2012-04-15

The toothbrush idea is good. You can now buy a battery operated tooth brush for around $8. I have one by Oral-B and uses a AAA battery.

brandon9271 (author)2010-01-14

you could probably also make one of these with a..umm.. vibrating personal massager... :D

Tenz (author)brandon92712010-01-14


Jake Morton (author)Tenz2010-01-14


brandon9271 (author)Jake Morton2010-01-14

somehow I don't think it would be featured on the front page... :)

Madrigorne (author)brandon92712010-01-15

OMG hahahahahahahahahaha

nudemanonbike (author)Madrigorne2010-01-21

Hell, You could make it with An old Playstation controller.

But that's not as fun as what you suggested...


MonteJC (author)2010-01-19

I don't have video of my homemade version but if you go to the site below there are two very good ones.

That's where I got the idea.

DIY-Guy (author)2010-01-18

Would you mind terribly much posting a video of this in action, if possible?


spylock (author)2010-01-17

Very good,Im gonna make one as I was thinking about the problem I was going to have planting my greens cause the seeds are so tiny,thanks to you that problem will be solved,got anything to make weeding easier?

MonteJC (author)2010-01-16

Seed tape is not a new idea.

Google that term and you'll find hundreds of references.

It's been around for decades. and it is in fact very easy to make your own. 

I'm working on a post on that very subject. 

The commercially available ones are fairly expensive and you are VERY limited as to what type of seed is available.
This sowing gadget is mainly aimed at folks who are sowing LOTS of seed.

If you have ever been faced with needing to sow a hundred or more 144 cell flats you would immediatly see the appeal.

People who wintersow (the subject of some of my other Instructables) often sow 400-500 containers during the winter months.


whygreen (author)2010-01-16

I noticed at local home store that they now have "seed tape."

The seeds are in the eco-tape that helps feed/start the seeds.    Lots of different types, etc...   Just hoe your row and put the tape in it.  Cover.  Done.   Seemed fine for a small home garden.

This seems like overkill.  Sorry to buzzkill.  I just want you know that the seed tape is out there, not trying to be negative.    :)

Of course seed tape is such a simple idea, that I instantly was kicking myself for not patenting it and making a fortune from licensing... :(

simonjtaylor212 (author)2010-01-15

I don't think my wife will be too happy when she finds her toothbrush covered in soil!

SoulvilleUSA (author)2010-01-14

exellent idea... you could even use the blind and funnel by itself and just hold your cellphone to it on vibrate!

luvit (author)2010-01-11

my sweat shop full of children plant individual seads just fine.
you can't post this stuff. you put hard working children out of work.

FunkNattidelic (author)luvit2010-01-11

I agree!
Although, now the children that work in your sweatshop will be exponentially more efficient, provided they find a toothbrush each.

The toothbrush costs more than the children.

fultron89 (author)FunkNattidelic2010-01-11

Plus their teeth will be sparkly.

whiteoakart (author)2010-01-14

Awesomely simple.

hairybaroque (author)2010-01-12

 Silly ideas often work - it isn't often someone posts anything as funny (and practical) as this. Jolly well done!

Building Books (author)2010-01-12

 great idea

MonteJC (author)2010-01-11

Had to let the kids go.

They couldn't afford food on the salary I paid and were eatin' the seed.

A novel idea?

Well, I did see the inspiration in a book.

.....slinking off now

mbudde (author)2010-01-11

Sweet! I was trying to find something like this, thanks!

lemonie (author)2010-01-11

That's a novel idea.


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