In the world of soil amenders, biochar is one of the most sustainable, environmentally friendly, and effective supplements you can add to your soil. The addition of biochar will create a self-propagating system that will maintain a bio-active, vibrant, and regenerated soil. At Tappin’ Roots, we know biochar’s benefits to your garden are tremendous, and it can even knock your carbon footprint to below zero. This amendment is so important to life, your garden should not be without it. We offer this super supplement in our new Dynamic Soil Amender.
So what IS biochar anyway?
Biochar is produced by “carbonizing” biomass. What this means is the biomass (think organic materials) is subjected to high heat and enriched with carbon during processes called pyrolysis and gasification. This happens all the time in nature – forest fires and old soil management practices produced similarly enriched soil. This natural process is now being reproduced – aiding incredible benefits to the home gardener as well as the planet.
“To properly explain what biochar is, we need to return to the Amazon basin circa 450 a.d. Indigenous people didn’t practice slash-and-burn farming as they do now. They practiced slash-and-char agriculture, roasting wood and leafy greens in “smothered” fires, in which lower temperatures and oxygen levels resulted in the production of charcoal instead of ash. The charcoal was buried in fields where crops were grown.
But then, with the arrival of Europeans and their diseases, the Amazon civilizations, some with cities of more than 100,000 people, collapsed. Slash-and-char agriculture was forgotten, as were the fields of buried charcoal. But they weren’t gone. In the 20th century, huge expanses of black soil were rediscovered, although at first no one knew what they were. Then, in the 1990s, scientists determined that these soils were man made. They were dubbed terra preta (“dark earth” in Portuguese). And they were extensive. Some estimates put the total acreage covered by the charcoal-enriched soil at twice the size of Great Britain.” – Jeff Cox
Why is biochar environmentally friendly?
As you keep reading, you’ll see how biochar is a key factor in growing impressive gardens. But biochar also shines as a method of lowering the carbon footprint. First, biochar retains nitrous oxide and carbon much more efficiently than your average Joe soil, potentially reducing the emission of these gases. Carbon in decomposing plants, which would otherwise escape into the air as greenhouse gases, is instead sequestered by the biologically active charcoal in the soil. Biochar also mitigates water pollution by storing runoff, and reduces the need for harmful chemicals. The biochar production method also produces oil and gas byproducts that can be used as sustainable energy. The held carbon in the biochar also provides a more fertile base for future plants.
This brings us to the next question…
Why is biochar helpful for a garden?
The absorption capacity of biochar provides significant benefits for any type of soil. Much like humas, biochar is colonized by a spectrum of beneficial life. Microbes, earthworms and other organisms produce carbon-based molecules that stick to the charcoal, gradually increasing the soil’s carbon content. The biochar in Tappin’ Roots Dynamic Soil Amender is porous and will soak up excess nutrients and retain water – this water retention aspect is vital for drought plagued areas of the planet. “Biochar also stimulates mycorrhizal fungi—those fungal symbionts that live on plant roots will scour surrounding soil for hard-to-find phosphorus, and deliver it back to their host plants. According to scientists studying the soils, microbial growth of all kinds is substantially improved. And so is the soil’s ability to hold nutrients until plants need them, then dole them out at the optimum rate for plant health.” – Jeff Cox
Did you know crops have been shown to grow 45 percent greater mass with biochar enriched soil versus poor soil fertilized with chemical fertilizers? This is a huge statement!
Along with over a dozen composted super plant food ingredients, Tappin’ Roots Dynamic Soil Amender is brimming with biochar. Adding this ONE amender to your garden soil will create an incredibly decadent growing environment with a complete nutritional profile.
(If you water or foliar spray with Tappin Roots All Stages (100% natural phytohormone extracts), your plant’s growth processes will be fine tuned to a perfect level of performance, bumping up your results even further.
We strongly suggest trying biochar; it’s a useful addition to all soil types. The fact is, healthy plants begin with healthy soil. Biochar will elevate soil health in a way you may have never experienced before. It will increase soil biodiversity, plant health and crop yields – while also putting your carbon footprint in the black!