Biochar: What is Biochar?

Biochar The Secrets Out

Biochar The Secrets Out

We Doowans LOVE to bring you the latest and greatest in gardening and other news. We have known about this secret for years now and it time, we spill the beans. If you know what I mean. So we wrote, Biochar the secrets out. Some gardens have heard of Biochar. Those new to gardening may not have, and hears, (I know), the secret to a prolific garden.

The short answer, Biochar is like steroids for your garden plants. They love the stuff.

The long answer, Biochar is a name for charcoal when it is used for particular purposes, especially as a soil amendment. Like all charcoal, biochar is created by pyrolysis of biomass. Biochar is under investigation as an approach to carbon sequestration to produce negative carbon dioxide emissions. Biochar thus has the potential to help mitigate climate change, via carbon sequestration. Independently, biochar can increase soil fertility, increase agricultural productivity and provide protection against some foliar and soil-borne diseases. Furthermore, biochar reduce pressure on forests, though the degree to which results offer long-term carbon sequestration in practice has been challenged. Biochar is a stable solid, rich in carbon and can endure in soil for thousands of years.

Biochar How it works

Biochar How it works

Biochar Research

Researchers have shown that by adding charcoal dust, (Biochar) which can be produced from crop residues and other wastes to soil, they can reverse soil fertility decline, improve crop yields, and improve plant response to fertilizer. The benefits of this charcoal (Biochar) powder and its low production cost make it an important strategy for agricultural development and sustainable land management, and a potentially significant tool for reducing greenhouse gases by sequestering carbon in soil.
The technology has strong preliminary evidence to support its impact. Research has found that early adoption by farmers increased yields by approximately 23% in the first season of application, and 30% a year later. However, there is a need to make the technology scalable the distribution network for biochar is diffuse and difficult to build up, so it may prove most expedient to allow farmers to produce and apply the biochar themselves, using a low-cost kiln and inputs that are readily accessible on most farms.
Research presented at a recent American Chemical Society annual meeting suggests that biochar plus chemical fertilizer yields increased growth of winter wheat and several vegetables by 25-50% compared to chemical fertilization alone. Soil Science Society of America experiments found that biochar supplemented with fertilizer outperformed fertilizer alone by 60%.

Biochar Looks like an English muffin with all those nooks and cranies

Biochar Looks like an English Muffin, with all those nooks and crannies
Doowans would like to thank Jocelyn for the biochar electron microscope images
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Monsanto has been barking up the wrong tree, If you know what I mean. Monsatan is bragging about its increase in yields. Here’s what a Farmer said about that. Well they need a lesson in Biochar. To put in their terms, More study is needed. Can you teach an old dog new tricks? Not likely in this case. They want to sell their chemicals (Roundup). The benefit of mankind is not their top priority. Let’s let that sleeping dog lay, if you know what I mean.

Biochar a Valuable Soil Amendment

Biochar is a solid material obtained from the carbonisation of biomass. Biochar may be added to soils with the intention to improve soil functions and to reduce emissions from biomass that would otherwise naturally degrade to greenhouse gases. Biochar also has appreciable carbon sequestration value. These properties are measurable and verifiable in a characterisation scheme, or in a carbon emission offset protocol.

This 2,000 year-old practice and may go back further, converts agricultural waste into a soil enhancer that can hold carbon, boost food security and discourage deforestation. The process creates a fine-grained, highly porous charcoal that helps soils retain nutrients and water. Exactly what your garden plants need.
Biochar is found in soils around the world as a result of vegetation fires and historic soil management practices. Ever wonder why after a fire the vegetation comes back so fast and is more prolific? Yep, Biochar.

Biochar The Gardeners best keep Secret.

Biochar The Gardeners best keep Secret.

Intensive study of biochar rich dark earths in the Amazon, has led to a wider appreciation of biochar’s unique properties as a soil enhancer.
Biochar will be an important tool to increase food security and cropland diversity in areas with severely depleted soils, scarce organic resources, and inadequate water and chemical fertilizer supplies.
Biochar also improves water quality and quantity by increasing soil retention of nutrients and agrochemicals for plant and crop utilization. More nutrients stay in the soil instead of leaching into groundwater and causing pollution. Is Biochar the Secrets out, the new wonder drug for Mother Earth? Read on!

Biochar a Powerfully Tool to Combat Climate Change

The carbon in Biochar resists degradation and can hold carbon in soils for hundreds to thousands of years. Biochar is produced through the gasification processes that heats the biomass in the absence (or under reduction) of oxygen.
In addition to creating a soil enhancer, sustainable biochar practices can produce oil and gas byproducts that can be used as fuel, providing clean, renewable energy. When the biochar is added to the ground as a soil enhancer, the system can become “carbon negative.” Meaning we can reduce Co2 emissions around the world.
Biochar and bio-energy in co-production can help combat global climate change by displacing fossil fuel use and by sequestering carbon in stable soil carbon pools. It may also reduce emissions of nitrous oxide.
We can use this simple, yet powerful, technology to store 2.2 gigatons of carbon annually by 2050. It’s one of the few technologies that is relatively inexpensive, widely applicable, and quickly scalable. We really can’t afford not to pursue it. As a matter of fact we can all pursue this secret practice at home. Here’s how!

Biochar A Sustainable practice that could save out planet.

Biochar A Sustainable practice that could save out planet.

Biochar in the Garden

Here are some benefits of using Biochar in your garden?

Receive the following benefits with the addition of Biochar in your home garden.

  • Enhanced plant growth
  • Suppressed methane emission
  • Reduced nitrous oxide emission (estimate 50%)
  • Reduced fertilizer requirement (estimate 10%)
  • Reduced leaching of nutrients
  • Stored carbon in a long-term stable sink
  • Reduces soil acidity: raises soil pH
  • Reduces aluminum toxicity
  • Increased soil aggregation due to increased fungal hyphae
  • Improved soil water handling characteristics
  • Increased soil levels of available Ca, Mg, P, and K
  • Increased soil microbial respiration
  • Increased soil microbial biomass
  • Stimulated symbiotic nitrogen fixation in legumes
  • Increased arbuscular mycorrhyzal fungi
  • Increased cation exchange capacity

Just to name a few. Biochar the Secrets Out could just save us from our mistakes of the past and turn things around for the human race in the future. Gardeners around the world may just be the saving grace for this planet. Join us in using the Biochar secret in your home garden. Our children will be glad you did.

Biochar Plant Steroids

Biochar Plant Steroids

The Doowans way to making Biochar

Use 100% natural charcoal briquettes. Not the ready light with the lighter fuel infused. They can be found at most stores. Or has a Biochar burner we offer from BurnRight use this link and tell them we sent you. This burner severs two purposes. It’s a debris burner, that can be used for yard clean up and at the same time. One can make Charcoal that can be used for Biochar. It’s inexpensive and serves a dual purpose.

Take your charcoal and crush it up into small pieces the smaller the better. We started with a small bag of charcoal until we got the hang of this process. We like to add our natural fertilizers like Compost Tea, Worm Tea and extra ingredients to our Biochar to give it and extra kick. This is one way to charge and infuse the biochar with compost tea and extra ingredients that you might like.

Put charcoal in a 5 gallon or larger bucket or larger barrel, filled half way up add water or  compost tea up to 3/4 full. (completely covering the biochar). This is where you could add in microbes as well. We add fish emulsion and sea weed extract. Believe it or not we also add molasses. The microbes seem to like this. You can add bone meal, calcium, and even Urine, anything else that you think your plants will use.

Biochar Activation

Biochar Activation

Use a long-handled wooden spoon or stick and stir in one direction for about a minute or two and then the other direction. Repeat several times. To make this job even easier, We use a fish aquarium air pump with two air outlets. Around $12.00 in cost. We place one outlet at the bottom and the other a couple inches in the top of the solution. This provides a constant mixing and the micros like the oxygen. We let this brew for 24-36 hrs. It ferments pretty fast this way. Or you can just let it sit and ferment like they show in this video.

We drain the liquid off and mix it in a Rain Barrel we use to water our plants from. This allows use to continue to added diluted fertilizer to our vegetable garden plants as they grow. And grow they do! Just like the Amazon.

Biochar Comparison

Biochar Comparison

Add the Biochar, the activated charcoal, the chunky and powdered stuff, to the soil or compost at a rate of 5 cups per cubic foot of dampened soil . Be sure that the biochar is mixed under and into the soil real good. This activated stuff does a slow release of vital nutrients to the roots of the plants. It also allows for less watering as it holds the water in the soil.

When you are finished with mixing it into the soil be sure to add in the Biochar compost tea over the areas where it was just added. We usually do this after the plants are established. We like to container garden as there is less weeding and water waste in container gardening. And we also use raised vegetable beds and planters as well. This is a real back saver. But if you like to plant directly into good old Mother Earth this works great as well.
Biochar is Yummy stuff for the soil, plants and microbes. Give this a try, it made a big difference in our garden and we can guarantee it will in yours.

See Biochar the Secrets Out is no longer a Secret

See, Biochar the Secrets Out, is no longer a Secret

Biochar The Secrets Out is the Master Gardeners best kept secret. Don’t tell anyone! If you know what I mean!

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Biochar it's not a secret anymore because CJC has a big mouth.

Biochar it’s not a secret anymore because Thunderbird has a big mouth.

Biochar, The Secrets Out in the Garden, because of Big Mouth!