A lush, green lawn is beautiful but requires considerable upkeep. However, biochar improves the soil while reducing overall maintenance. If your lawn appears thin or patchy, it could benefit from a soil amendment that increases its health and viability. Even a lawn that seems healthy will look better. At Wakefield BioChar, our premium biochar treats soil concerns ranging from low fertility to poor water-holding capacity.
What is Biochar?
The Amazon jungle is not known for especially fertile soils. However, there is an exception, and that is the Terra Preta or Black Earth. This is the exceptionally rich soil found in areas of the Amazon Basin. Thousands of years ago, indigenous people buried the remains of crops and plant materials so that they would smolder rather than burn after being set on fire.
The result was the transformation of lesser-quality soil into highly fertile soil. The biochar used by the Amazonians continues to keep it healthy because it remains in the ground for decades if not centuries.
When people ask, what is biochar? It is similar to Terra Preta. However, today it is produced by pyrolysis, the process of heating biomass at a very high temperature without oxygen. While any type may be used, at Wakefield BioChar, we use recycled wood from paper mills. That’s a prime example of beneficial reuse, turning potential waste into a valuable commodity.
How Does Biochar Benefit Lawns?
Healthy plants require healthy soil. Biochar can improve your lawn, no matter what type you have on your property. Use biochar for lawns to increase water retention and reduce the need for watering. With biochar, there is also less need to apply commercial fertilizer.
Other ways biochar benefits lawns include:
Biochar boosts soil fertility, which means increased growth for plants. Because it also increases water retention, adding biochar gives lawns more moisture during hot, dry spells. During periods of drought, lawns amended with biochar tend to stay greener.
Increased pest and disease resistance
Biochar helps to reduce disease in lawns by influencing plant defenses against these pathogens. It helps plants respond to both fungal and soil-borne pathogens.
Increased nutrient retention
Biochar’s porous structure allows it to better absorb vital nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and carbon. Biochar stores these nutrients, making them available when needed by the root system.
Improved soil structure
Biochar improves soil structure by increasing aeration and reducing density. While boosting root penetration, biochar also improves water filtration.
Biochar can significantly reduce the amount of soil lost to erosion which also depletes minerals. A recent study found that, on average, biochar reduced soil runoff by 25 percent and erosion by 16 percent.
Carbon dioxide is the primary source of greenhouse gas emissions. Biochar sequesters carbon so that it is not released into the atmosphere. This stored carbon remains in the earth for centuries. For every pound of biochar used, roughly 2 pounds of carbon dioxide is kept out of the atmosphere.
How to Use Biochar for Growing Lawns
How do I improve the soil in my lawn? Use biochar. It’s a straightforward process that yields good results.
Here’s what you need to know:
How much biochar to use
At Wakefield BioChar, we recommend top dressing with one cubic foot of biochar for every 700 square feet of your lawn. Your grass seed germinates more readily when you use it.
When to apply biochar
While there is no wrong time to apply it, the best season is early spring. It helps boost beneficial soil microbial activity, and these microbes create the healthiest environment in the spring.
How to apply biochar
For optimum results, aerate the lawn before applying biochar. Mix it with compost or mulch to boost the lawn’s organic content. Water the area after application for the first several days to ensure it is mixed into the soil. When seeding or reseeding a lawn, blend biochar two inches into the soil at five percent soil volume.
Learn More From Wakefield BioChar
Here is more information on how to use biochar in your lawn and garden. When using it on your lawn, you are doing more than improving the health of your soil. You are doing your part to combat climate change.
Better Soil, Better World.