What Is Biochar Gardening?

Published On: September 5, 2014

CBS – MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The mayor of Minneapolis and […]

CBS – MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The mayor of Minneapolis and the chairman of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux signed an agreement Tuesday that promotes the use of biochar.
Jim Doten, Minneapolis’ environmental services’ supervisor, says it’s a product similar to cooking charcoal that’s used for gardening.
“They really increase the soil fertility, it increases crop yields, it reduces the amount of inputs you need, the amount of fertilizer you need,” Doten said.
Biochar is typically made from waste wood which is heated to 500 degrees in a sealed container. The resulting product is very porous, so in garden soil, biochar holds water and nutrients.
“It will be in the soil for hundreds, up to thousands of years, rather than breaking down and being released into the atmosphere,” he said.

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