This is a collaborative post in partnership with Carbon Gold
I always find September to be a brilliant month for planning new projects. That old back-to-school feeling never fails to get me organised, and the garden is no exception. I’m busy working out how to keep the colour going, planning next year’s garden, and tackling jobs that were neglected during the hectic spring and summer months. Are you getting organised this month too?
Right at the top of my garden to do list is giving my soil some attention. My plants have struggled a bit this year, and while the weather has been tricky, I think it’s mostly because the soil is rather exhausted. A garden’s soil plays an absolutely crucial role in the health of its plants and wildlife, so it’s time to take action!
I’ve recently been introduced to the Carbon Gold range of biochar composts and soil improvers, which aim to improve the health of your soil, your plants, and the planet in general.
What is Biochar?
Biochar is a high-carbon form of charcoal. It’s produced by a process called pyrolysis, which involves heating organic matter without oxygen at very high temperatures. It looks like fine charcoal, and can be added to soil or compost to provide a range of benefits.
The benefits of using Biochar in your garden
Adding Biochar to your soil is highly beneficial for your plants and the environment.
Biochar improves soil’s structure, aeration, nutrient retention and water-holding capacity. It also supports beneficial microbes, which play a key role in healthy root growth and fighting off pests. All of these things are really good news for your plants, and the health of your garden in general.
Biochar also locks away carbon permanently, which prevents carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere – so it’s great for the environment and your carbon footprint too. According to the Carbon Gold team, one tonne of carbon locked away in biochar equals three tonnes of carbon dioxide permanently removed from the atmosphere.
The other great thing about biochar is that it doesn’t degrade – so it delivers a long-term improvement to your soil.
Having learned all this about biochar, I’m wondering why on earth I haven’t discovered it until now!
The Carbon Gold Biochar range
The Carbon Gold range of biochar products includes composts, fertilisers, and soil improvers, all of which are 100% peat-free and Soil Association approved for organic growing.
If you’re new to using biochar, the website has lots of information on how to use their products. I particularly like the fact that you can view products according to season, or the gardening task you want to tackle.
Over the last few weeks I’ve been trying out a few products from the range in containers, in borders, and to grow seeds.
Carbon Gold biochar composts
Carbon Gold biochar composts combine biochar with organic coco coir, vegetable-based nutrients and mycorrhizal fungi to give seeds and plants the best possible start.
I’ve been using the seed compost to start off seedlings for next year’s flowers.
This is lovely compost to work with. It’s loose, it drains well, and it’s really clean to handle.
My seeds all germinated well and are continuing to show strong growth.
Carbon Gold biochar all purpose compost is suitable for use in containers, raised beds and garden borders. I used it to plant up a container for autumn colour.
Again, it’s a nice compost to work with, and my plants are thriving. With both composts I’ve also noticed that water retention is really good; I haven’t had to water as frequently as usual.
Carbon Gold Biochar Soil Improver
This is Carbon Gold’s core product, and the basis for all other products in the range. You can add it to your compost when potting up, use it as a top dressing around plants, or add it to the bottom of a planting hole when planting out.
I’ve been using the Soil Improver when adding new plants to the garden, but I’m definitely going to add it to my border soil in general, to help improve the structure and nutrient levels.
Carbon Gold Biochar Biology Blend
This is a powerful soil rejuvenator, delivering an intense boost to plants. I used it to perk up the compost in my raised planter before sowing a new crop of herbs and salad.
I was expecting this product to be messy, but it actually doesn’t really leave a residue on your hands. As you can see, the plants seem to be happy too:
Carbon Gold Biochar Fertiliser
This product delivers nutrients in the NPK ratio of 5-5-5, which means it’s perfect for use as an all-purpose fertiliser. You can use it as a top dressing or when planting out. It’s in pellet form, which makes it easy to handle and scatter – plus you can clearly see where you’ve applied it.
Having spent a few weeks using Carbon Gold products, I’m definitely going to continue using biochar in the garden. My plants are thriving, my soil is improved, and the environmental benefits it offers are helping me to garden more sustainably. The products are really quick and easy to use too – what’s not to love?
You can find out more about Carbon Gold and explore their range of products here.
Do you use biochar in your garden? Or do you think you’ll be giving it a try? Let me know in the comments.
Pin for later
Carbon Gold supplied me with the products used in this feature for review purposes. All comments and opinions are honest and based on my experience of using the products.