The balls are injected with a chemical mixture that ignites them about 30 seconds after they drop from a helicopter.
The balls catch fire thanks to a mixture of potassium permanganate and glycol.
"You inject (glycol) into the ball with a needle, and that is the oxidizer that creates a chemical reaction that creates fire," Doug Voltolina, who works for the district, told WFTV.
The machine used to puncture and release the balls was invented by a man in Leesburg. It helps forest managers blanket areas with fire.
Tuesday’s prescribed burn was expected to clear 976 acres -- the first time in six years the area has had its underbrush cleared.
"It's a large acreage burn, so the helicopter helps us in getting the burn done a lot quicker," Pete Henn, who also works for the district, told WFTV.
The method also improves safety because fewer people are needed to ignite the fire.
"When you have a helicopter ... rather than individuals walking on a very hot day like today, you can cover thousands of acres," Voltolina told WFTV.
The forest management team said it can safely burn more than 10,000 acres in a single day.
The agency is responsible for maintaining more than 700,000 acres in 18 Florida counties.