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biochar, worth all the hype?

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I first heard about biochar from a gentle and unassuming older lady who was making biochar at home in her kiln. She explained the role that biochar could play in both the fight against climate change and the improvement of soil quality, before gifting me a small bag of it to try out in my own small vegetable garden. I decided to carry out some citizens science in my back yard and put biochar to the test. I planted 5 squash plants and added biochar to the soil for two of the five. To be frank, I didn’t really know what to expect but I will happily test anything that will  organically allow me to fight climate change and grow better vegetables at the same time.

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maine: goat intensive biochar workshop with shana hanson

 

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Dear friends,

Sunday at 8 AM Gary Masalin and Shana Hanson will lead an optimum open burn for
biochar in the Rainbow Roof house pasture (striped multicolored roof, 195 Back Belmont Rd. on the north side of the rd. just out of town from Jesse Robbins Rd. by less than half a mile).  Spectators and helpers are invited.

This practice is especially suited to goat farmers feeding high quantities of tree fodder, as we collect a surplus of brush annually, and tend not to have time to move brush to, nor size for, a retort burner.  I use the biochar to seed new pasture species into sod, and
for urine catchment and soil improvement at gates, on paths and in bedding (which later gets spread).  The (usually white) goats like to roll in the charcoal for skin mites – handy labor saver if your desired use requires the biochar to be ground up.

I have a small video camera.  I am hoping that one of you will volunteer to capture our burn process on video, to be of use to others.

RSVP if possible, but certainly you are also welcome to just show up.

Thanks, Shana


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2-day biochar workshop this weekend in massachusetts!

October 17 & 18, 2015
9:00am to 4:00pm
Location: Kittredge Farm, 24 Hillsville Road, North Brookfield, MA 01535
Cost: $150.00 for both days, with Financial Assistance available, and for more information on this, please contact Gary Neves, Course Administrator (gary@bionutrient.org)

Biochar is yet another tool in the toolbox of regenerative agriculture! In the last two decades, Biochar has and is receiving more attention of its benefits to agriculture and of its other uses. This Biochar 2-day Workshop with Gary Gilmore will have both a lecture component and a hands-on component, where attendees will learn how to make an efficient and easy to build Biochar burner, produce biochar during the 2-day Workshop, and learn of a variety of uses of biochar, from producing fuel, to run engines and heat greenhouses, to producing wood vinegar, and more! Whether you are a novice or have some experience, this Biochar 2-day Workshop is for every one! Learning to make biochar on site, for your farms, fields, and gardens, is a wonderfully inexpensive soil amendment, with much potential benefit to receive!