Biochar de Cáscara y pulpa de café


"La cuenca del Amazonas en un mapa español de 1562."
"On the left a soil poor in nutrients (oxysol); on the right an oxisol transformed into soil preta fertile.(photo Bruno Glaser)..."
"The biochar has a very porous structure in which water and nutrients can be stored..."
"behaves as a habitat for microbes"
"The soil captures carbon, reducing carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere"
The pre-Columbian indigenous people of the Amazon created a highly productive soil known as Amazon black earth (in Portuguese: terra preta), which among other components contained charcoal. It is not clear if this carbon was incorporated into the soil with the intention of improving its properties or if it is an accidental phenomenon. They produced it by applying smoldering combustion with their agricultural waste (for example, by covering burning vegetation with earth) in pits or trenches. Following observations and experiments, a team of researchers in French Guiana hypothesized that the Amazonian earthworm Pontoscolex corethrurus might be the primary agent in the process of pulverizing and incorporating the coal debris into the mineral layer of the soil. The term ‘biochar’ was coined by Peter Read * to define the charcoal used as a soil amendment.
The terra preta or black earth of the ancestral Amazonian cultures.
Due to the rapid decomposition and torrential rains that leach the components of the earth in most Amazonian soils there is only fertile organic matter in the first 10 centimeters of the surface.
However, in the terra preta where there were ancient settlements, they have found around 2 meters deep of highly fertile black earth. The indigenous peoples of the Amazon fed the land in a reciprocal way through their crops. They dumped a lot of organic matter in the same place from fish remains, animal dung, bones, agricultural waste, human dung, ceramics, and charcoal where these Amazon communities lived, since several meters deep are this black earth full of coal today we study in detail this presence of carbon for its properties of maintaining an ideal structure to retain air, water and nutrients in soils and also behaves as a habitat for microbes.
Biologically with beneficial organisms that is what today is called biochar.   The element carbon co2 travels from the atmosphere then to bodies on earth and then to the ground and finally back to the atmosphere and from this knowledge of the carbon cycle… we are able to understand how we can capture it and use it for our benefit , the benefits of the planet and also what benefits biochar provides on our earth. Biochar has a very porous structure in which water and nutrients can be stored and kept there in the soil available for vegetation. Imagine that biochar as a sponge will absorb the nutrients around it and won’t let them go until a plant root actively extracts them. Therefore it is important to soak the biochar with nutrients and before applying it let the microbes first prepare (activate) them for the plants, the more microbes the soil has, the more nutrients will be readily available to the plants (the more active the mix will be). Biochar is the perfect habitat for those microbes, these bacteria and fungi in the soil because there is space in the pores, also oxygen and water, nutrients to be able to process and thanks to those microorganisms and the environment of the biochar the soil becomes a fertile source and humus production constant. Another benefit of biochar in the soil is that it allows greater oxygen flow and greater root penetration, thereby stimulating both vertical and horizontal root growth. A vital factor for the environment is that the soil captures carbon, reducing carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere.. Last but not least is that the pore surface of the biochar has a negative charge and the nutrients in the soil like magnesium or calcium have a positive charge so the biochar pulls the nutrients like a magnet and sticks to them until they are absorbed by microbes or roots. 
Biochar applications and how to use it in the soil

Crushed biochar has a larger surface area than coarse biochar, a larger area means more space for water and nutrients to settle, ie small pieces of biochar are more efficient for water and nutrient storage. However, powdered biochar is not entirely necessary. The biochar will take longer to grind than the char process itself and over time the biochar will break down into smaller pieces in your soil. If the soil is clayey and you need to add air spaces to improve drainage, larger pieces are recommended. Ultimately any size of biochar, small or large pieces will both be an amazing improvement for the soil.
Biochar is highly recommended for compost production; in preparation of substrates for seeds in nurseries, buried in the soil for transplants of forest trees and crops, it helps a lot to sanitize and reduce odors when used as a soil for animal facilities and maximizes the collection of urine and manure.
By changing the cover it can be added directly to the soil or incorporated into the compost. Clay soils are very heavy and dense so not much air enters the soil, but biochar has a porous structure that adds air or oxygen spaces, allowing better root growth and activating microorganisms. Sandy soils filter water and rinse nutrients very quickly, applying biochar helps store water and nutrients for proper retention of both. Furthermore, charcoal can be used in bioremediation to treat septic tanks and water contaminated with heavy metals for that reason is used in rain filters as well.
Biochar has a very precise production process for two reasons.
  • Sustainability:
    – Possible emission of carbon dioxide.
    – Trace of contamination.
  • Pyrolysis:
     Carbon fixation according to an optimal carbonization curve defined according to the density and origin of the biomass. 
Next it is important to know how to mix the microbes to inoculate or activate the charcoal.
Finally biochar application measures to correctly restore the structure and fertility of soils.
With biochar


Understand biochar activation and why it’s important for the soil.


“What occurred when you attempted to grow a tomato using biochar and without it? … with the biochar was even worse that without the biochar!”
Exactly as the use of any product, may or may not work.
  • The biochar that’s raw, as it comes, is, maybe not the best pH balance for the crop but once activated, it’s a much better pH for the soil.
  • Balance the macronutrient, when burning biomass, you lose the nitrogen, and you need to bring back the nitrogen and better balances the biochar out.
  • Probably the most important thing: it increases the cation exchange, Biochar cation exchange capacity (CEC) is a key property central to helping retain soil nutrients, reduce fertilizer runoff, and improve soil water retention. Experimental studies showed that the biochar ozonation can increase the biochar CEC value by a factor of 7–9 (nearly 10).
  • The most important reason why we activate the Biochar is: Better results!
  • An activation exemple…
    Grass clippings, five gallon bucket of grass clippings /five gallon bucket of biochar. Spread this out and mix it on, this creates a moist, nutrient rich and microbially active environment that is going to become completely colonized and matured by this microbial explosion. There’s going to be nutrients changing form, microbes just exploding and exploring the biochar. Once you spread it in the soil, the soils will just become undeniably fertile…
    These grass clippings are going to shrink a lot. So it looks, like, It’s 50 percent grass clippings. By the time this is done, it’s just gonna look like biochar with some goop around it, around the edges, then we will cover this up with some cardboard or banana leaves or some palm leaves or  some brown leaves from whatever trees is nearby. Leave it in a nice, dark, moist place for a while, maybe even wet it down if it doesn’t rain. And what will happen naturally is you’ll probably get a lot of worms coming up in here. We will let this sit until the grass is mostly composted, a few months at least. Start a couple different piles.
  • Another way to activate biochar, is the use of one bucket of biochar, one bucket of the worm castings, mix it, then just use some flour because you want to cause a microbial explosion. To cause a microbial explosion where the microbes are just expanding and colonizing the surfaces of the biochar and everything will bonds at that point, glued together to create enzymes and the acids, the organic acids, that makes the living soil so much more powerful than the dead soil. Cover it to keep it nice and moist and cool to get connected with fungal network and lock this stuff in, in just one week. If you give it two months, even better. 
  • Another activation method, is to throw the char, up on the animal house floor, cattle or chicken… biochar acts as an amazing deodorizer for the animals, and they just keep on pooping, throw the food in there and the scraps and it gets plenty energized with nutrients and there’s actually a good amount of living microorganisms. But then, when you take out all that litter, you’re going to put that all in a pile and let it finish off for a little bit. Clean this out maybe once a year.
  • The last activation method we present here, is a blend of biochar and a very fine micronized rock powder, the rock dust, chalky rock, dolomite. Just blend it, four parts biochar and one part rock powder (micronized better). You might wanna wear a dust mask when you’re playing with rock dust. Then add a little bit of flour, as microbial food, always add worm castings into the soil and at last one part of flour.

    Biochar it’s a pyrogenic (derived from fire) soil carbon.  The pyrogenic carbon, it’s a little bit different then the wood chip based carbon, the benefits can be understand on a molecular level,  the molecular structure change through a transformation, it was a wood chip and then a glowing ember and then it cooled off and became this black, very different crispy kind of material, it is no longer so easily biologically degradable. It doesn’t melt like away like a wood chip does, the microbial enzymes don’t break it apart the same way they do a wood chip. And so, it has longevity in soil and during that process, during the firing, the carbon structures that held everything together remain but a lot of the stuff in between is gutted out and you end up with this structure that was designed by the DNA of that plant, it’s an organic living material that has vascular tissue and it’s just amazingly, it’s like a geometric, fractal and 3D.  When it’s gutted out and all that’s left is that carbon scaffolding, it has extremely high surface area, so extremely high surface area and a long term life cycle in the soil. Extremely high surface area and it lasts for hundreds to thousands of years in the soil. How to Activate Biochar the biochar is just one of the most important elements for soils… Visit places on how to activate your biochar, put in rock dust, get some of the best quality bacterial inoculants and make your own bacterial inoculants at home, this is all part of what ancient cultures have been doing for thousands of years. Using nature’s technologies and we’re not creating anything new here, we’re just reinventing the wheel because we’ve been taught this chemical farming mentality and all these things are trying to marginalize when this is what we really need to do to have the highest quality food and activating biochar. Start making your own biochar. We’re having a complete paradigm shift in how we interact with this planet Organic Farming Principles that we live on and the organic farming principles and sustainable farming principles, farming with the natural systems of the earth, they hold the future for us. They hold the future for improving the utility of our soils for generations to come and taking that carbon out of the atmosphere and putting it back in the soils where it’s more valuable. Carbon in the atmosphere is a problem right now, carbon in the soils is a valuable, valuable asset.  It’s a real part of our planet and, really, it’s our understanding of biochar that’s evolving and that needs to evolve. 

Microscopy Observations of Habitable Space in Biochar for Colonization


Sequesters atmospheric carbon for millennia

  • A powerful soil amendment increases water holding capacity
  • Retains nitrous oxide in the soil
  • Rejuvenates soil life
  • Increases food security
  • Increases beneficial microbes

Those microbes further sequester carbon in the form of Glomalin via – Liquid Carbon Pathway

Mycorrhizal fungi live in a mutually beneficial relationship with 90% of the earth’s plants.

Plants will draw 40 to 50% more carbon from the air than they themselves need so that they can exude carbohydrates into the soil to feed their mycorrhiza

In return the mycorrhiza act in unison with bacteria and other microbes to secure nutrients and water for its host plant.

Mycorrhizal fungi can retrieve water and nutrients unavailable to the plant itself.

These fungi also sequester carbon in the for of Glomalin

In the soil undisturbed by pesticides and artificial fertilizers carbon sequestration as high as 32 tons equivalent of co2/heec/yr have been recorded

In the nurturing of the soil sequestration that gives the BioBamboo system and exponential effect

The Liquid Carbon Pathway

The Liquid Carbon Pathway (LCP) is a symbiotic relationship between mycorrhizal fungi and 90% of all plants that has developed over the past 420 million years.
Plants will purposely produce extra carbohydrates (simple plant sugars) then exude that surplus into the soil to feed the fungi.  
Myccorhizal fungi cannot live without a host plant and, in exchange for this sugar, the fungi will mine and transport nutrients and water back to its host.  
For every cubic meter of soil, these fungi will send out as much as 20,000 km (12,000 miles) of hyphae — part of what comprise the fungal mycelium — so that they infiltrate every area of soil.  Fungi can access nutrients and water unavailable to the larger plant roots.
Nurturing this symbiotic relationship with biochar is essential for long-term climate change mitigation and reversal. One of the most notable results of the shift in weather patterns has been a deluge of rain followed by drought. Not only does the biochar itself absorb more water but it also can establish and nurture the growth of myccorhizal fungi (see image at left).
Myccorhizal fungi produce glomalin, a sticky substance that cements soil particles together, creating good tilth and passageways for air and water infiltration, allowing soils to absorb and retain more water. Then when drought follows and water become more tightly held by soil particles, it is the fungi that can send its hyphae into the smallest crevices of soil and extract and accumulate molecules of water and transport it back to the thirsty plant.In a similar way the fungi transport nutrients back to the plant.  Fungi can use its acids to release nutrients from soils and even rocks — transforming rock minerals into formats now usable by the plant.  Likewise, there are certain nutrients that only bacteria can extract from soils and the fungi will exchange sugar for the nutrient requested by the plant in a complex symbiotic exchange. The study of this relationship has shown that soils under perennial crops that are allowed to fully develop contain more available nutrients than neighboring soils on which agricultural chemicals have been used.
A study done at the University of Illinois showed that agricultural chemicals kill or reduce soil microbes resulting in the net loss of soil carbon.The Liquid Carbon Pathway is the primary means for sequestering long-term soil carbon.  It has long been thought that most of the soil carbon was contained in the top 8 inches of the soil strata in the form of the organic matter in humus.  It is known that this carbon is liable and easily returned to the atmosphere via bacterial action.

Since the discovery of glomalin in 1996 by USDA researcher, Dr. Sara Wright, large amounts of carbon have been found all the way down to 4 feet deep.  It is expected, as research goes deeper into soils, that carbon deposits from the LCP will also be scientifically verified.  As the mycorrhizal fungi go deeper into the soil to mine nutrients and water for the plant, they deposit more and more carbon in the form of glomlin — a substance that is believed to be quite stable once it is deposited.  The more mature this relationship is between plant and microbe the more volume of soil is accessed on behalf of the plant and the bigger and more reliable is corresponding crop production.
According to research done by Dr. Christine Jones of Australia , pasture soils with healthy LCP associations have been increasing the amount of carbon that they sequester beneath the grasses each year.
Currently, some pastures have been sequestering as much as 32 tons of CO2 per hectare/year. This makes biochar even more key to the reversal of climate change because biochar enables this vitally important process.  And in areas where all of the mycorrhizal fungi have been killed off, biochar can be inoculated to return them to full productivity.

So, in terms of carbon drawdown biochar plays several important functions:

  1. Sequesters carbon draw down by the plant taking it out of the carbon cycle for centuries
  2. Increases crop production and thereby the amount of carbon drawn from the air by the increased biomass

Supports the LCP for centuries so that this plant/microbe symbiosis can remove large amounts of carbon from the air year after year and deposit it in our carbon-starved soils

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi+ Biochar. Worldwide deterioration in soil quality has accelerated the food scarcity and environmental challenges. However, green restoration process using biochar coupled with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (BC + AMF) might be a suitable and sustainable option. Our review attempted to identify and address the knowledge gaps in the potential role of BC + AMF for soil quality rejuvenation. Biochar can provide a suitable habitat for AMF, and their coupled application would lead to an increase in the overall biomass productivity, crop
Biochar inoculated with mycchorizal fungi further sequesters carbon in normal agricultural soils long after its application.