Charcoal Making
Rich Haard, Fourth Corner Nursery, Bellingham , Washington, March 31, 2007

Terrapreta interest group

Here is a set of images about our charcoal making project this weekend. It is a smothered pit method, first time for myself . We did open the lower end of the pit after 5 hours and take out about 40 gallons , then we put the unburned wood back in and recovered. We will be looking at it again in about 18 hours.


Characterization of Pyrolysis Char for Use as an Agricultural Soil Amendment
Keith Harris1, Julia Gaskin1, Leticia Sonon2, and K.C. Das1
1Dept. of Biol. & Ag. Eng., 2AESL, College of Ag & Env. Sci University of Georgia, Athens, GA

The Southeastern Coastal Plain in the United States is a major agricultural production area; however, soils are typically low in cation exchange capacity (CEC), nutrient content, and organic carbon content. For example, Tifton


Contributions of Pinus Ponderosa Charcoal to Soil Chemical and Physical Properties
Christopher M. Briggs in Briggs, Breiner, Graham Pinus Ponderosa Charcoal 9 May 2005

Charcoal results from the incomplete burning of plant material and is found in most
soil surface horizons, but little is known about its effects on soil properties. The objectives of this
study were (1) to determine the chemical and physical properties of ponderosa pine charcoal


Charcoal Carbon in U.S. Agricultural Soils
Jan O. Skjemstad*,a, Donald C. Reicoskyb, Alan R. Wiltsb and Janine A. McGowana
Soil Science Society of America Journal (SSSAJ), 66:1249-1255 (2002)

a CSIRO Land and Water and CRC for Greenhouse Accounting, Private Bag No. 2, Glen Osmond, SA, Australia 5064
b USDA-ARS, North Central Soil Conservation Research Lab, 803 Iowa Ave., Morris, MN 56267
* Corresponding author (


Learning to use wood charcoal in farming at a Northwestern Washington native plant nursery.
Richard Haard, Fourth Corner Nurseries, Washington, Febuary 20, 2007
My motivation for preparing this post is to be able to use this motivate discussion of charcoal as a soil additive. Trying to do this work at a very busy nursery that is perhaps pushing their production factor too high (over 80%) is rather frustrating as experiments have gotten over ruled by planning changes, wiped out by harvest before I can read the data and the conditions set up for the experiment just do not work. However, I have been encouraged however and I am now using hardwood charcoal as a carrier for natural inocculum as a matter of routine.
Fourth Corner Nurseries is a wholesale supplier of native plant species, located on 77 acres in the coastal lowlands of northwestern Washington, USA. With approximately 40 acres under cultivation, we produce two/three million direct-seeded, field-grown, bare-root native plants annually. Our principal crop is individually seed-sourced, bare-root deciduous trees and shrubs, herbaceous perennials, grasses and emergent species such as sedges, cattails and rushes for environmental restoration purposes. Our mission is to sustainably grow plants while supporting workers and their families who depend on the farm for their economic subsistence. Use of surplus biomass from our willow coppice field and other materials is our alternative energy vision.
Aerial view of our farm

Aerial View of Fourth Corner Nurseries

Aerial View of Fourth Corner Nurseries

Richard Haard: Affinity of fungi and crop plant roots to charcoal
Richard Haard, February 12, 2007

The image below illustrates the affinity of fungi and crop plant roots to charcoal.

Charcoal placed in a fertile garden for a few months showing how crop roots (Swiss chard) and fungi are attached to this medium as habitat
Charcoal placed in a fertile garden for a few months showing how crop roots (Swiss chard) and fungi are attached to this medium as habitat

Ellen Baum, CLEAN AIR TASK FORCE, Sean Weitner, ENERGY CENTER OF WISCONSIN For the Clean Air Task Force State Climate Network, November 2006

The use of biomass to create fuel, energy and products is nothing newbridge media | Nike - Shoes & Sportswear Clothing


Chicken Litter Project & Potential of TP Sequestration
Erich J. Knight, Shenandoah Gardens, February 6, 2007

A professor at Virginia Tech will be starting a pilot project at a poultry farm near me next month.


Please contact me if any of you are interested in joining me on a field trip to Dayton VA. to see Dr. Foster A Agblevor's chicken litter pyrolysis project.


Reserve Your Spot: Biochar Technology Showcase Events during November 6-9, 2012
These free events are filling up fast! Save your spot now - pre-register at
Register for one or more days – identical program schedule each day, but test burns will take place at different sites.
Mobile Biochar Technology Comes to the Southern Oregon Woods
Waste-to-wealth technology transforms burn piles from cost center to profit center – public invited to demonstrations and lectures during November 6-9
Hosted by: Carbon Cultures, Illinois Valley Forest Practices Committee, Forestry Action Committee and Illinois Valley Business Entrepreneurial Center (IVBEC)
Who should attend:
• Forestry contractors
• Forest management agency personnel
• Fire Departments
• Land owners concerned with fuel load reduction
• Farmers and gardeners
• Compost producers and garden centers
• Students



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