We often refer to Genesis Biochar as a “CARBON BASED SPONGE”. One gram can have a surface area of over 2,000 square feet per gram – a bit bigger than an indoor volleyball court. It has the ability to absorb up to 6 times its weight with water, micro-organisms and other supporting nutrients. It’s helpful to picture it as a huge city of mansions with gigantic welcome mats that provide permanent homes for all of the components that make up healthy soil.
Evaluating the condition of your soil is our recommend first step. Getting your soil lab tested is the only sure way to identify what your soil needs but observation can often be just as important.
If your soil just needs long term conditioning then you can mix Genesis Biochar directly into your soil at a ratio of 5% to 10% to a depth below the root zone. If your soil looks more like the surface of mars than a black carbon rich soil, your application strategy may need to be more aggressive. Consider amending your soil with a mixture of 20% to 50% Genesis Biochar and compost and/or other amendment(s). If possible, keep the mix wet for a few days and let it stabilize as long as possible before mixing it into the soil. This will allow the amendments time to populate or “charge up” the Genesis Biochar. Mix it into the soil to a depth below the root zone. Water it well each day for a few days.
An even more effective technique is to soak your Genesis Biochar in compost tea or some other nutrient and microbial rich liquid amendments. This technique is referred to as inoculation. Inoculation charges up the Genesis Biochar thus accelerating the availability of the nutrient and microbial rich amendments to the plants. Let the mixture set a minimum of three days so it has time to stabilize. Inoculated Genesis Biochar can be mixed directly into the soil at a 5% to 10% ratio or mixed with compost, other organic materials up to a 50% ratio then mixed into the soil. Remember that the goal is to have 5% to 10% Genesis Biochar in your soil mixed it to a depth below the root zone. Make sure to water it well each day for a few days. Conditioning your soil with Genesis Biochar will help create the long term balance of carbon, nitrogen, micro-organisms and nutrients that plants need to thrive.
The general advice in the biochar community is that a healthy soil will have 5% to 10% biochar in the planting area down below the roots. Although it doesn’t have to go into the soil all at once, one time applications are usually more efficient. You will want to take this into consideration if you are going to be using no-till techniques. Remember that Genesis Biochar will last for hundreds of years so it will not be go anywhere, anytime soon.