Biochar is stable, carbon-rich form of charcoal that increases water and nutrient retention in soil. It is produced by pyrolysis, a process where biomass (in this case wood waste) is heated at high temperatures with little or no oxygen.
Activated biochar is great for improving soil structure:
- increases habitat for microbes
- increases nutrient retention
- increases water-holding capacity
- decreases soil acidity
- reduces leaching
As well as replenishing soil, it's good for animal health as a feed supplement! Just as charcoal is a traditional remedy for human digestive complaints, studies have shown animal health benefits such as improved digestion, increased immunity as well as better chicken coop hygiene and pasture improvement. Biochar's unique porous structure enables it to capture and hold minute particles like ammonia which in a backyard setting means less smell and less moisture content in your chicken house litter.
We add biochar to our chook feed, we give it to our cattle & sheep as a free-choice mineral & we add it to our liquid fertilisers for the garden & paddocks. Our customers tell us it's good for horses too.
If you're going to use it in your garden, please ACTIVATE your biochar by mixing it with an activator such as compost or fertiliser (like our liquid magic) for a week prior to use. Biochar has a sponge-like structure that absorbs nutrients, microbes and fungi. Just adding straight biochar into your soil will actually suck the soil's nutrients into the sponge, which may give you poorer results for a season before it can be beneficial! So please ensure you ACTIVATE it before using.