A workers' cooperative growing food on London's edge in the Lea Valley

One-day course: Introduction to Biochar

Introduction to Biochar: Production and Use

This course has now taken place. Please sign up to our email list to hear about future one day courses.

Date: Saturday 16 September 2023, 10am – 4pm (including a lunch break, please bring your own)

Biochar is an ancient soil improvement technique that is currently undergoing a resurgence in horticulture due to its ability to improve water and nutrient retention, increase microbial properties and enhance soil structure, all of which can lead to a rich, fertile soil and increased crop yields.

Biochar is also being produced as a mitigation against climate change due to its long-term carbon sequestration qualities which stores carbon in the soil for potentially hundreds or thousands of years. These qualities have led to it being given the nickname “black gold”.

The course will cover:

  • What is biochar
  • How to produce, activate and process biochar
  • How to use biochar

At the end of the course you will have a better understanding of biochar; learn of the different techniques of production; a demonstration and group involvement of the “pit” production method; learn different techniques for “activating” biochar; and how to use biochar.

This course is being run by Tommy Pewton, our apprentice grower and Hawkwood’s very own compost aficionado. He recently started producing and using biochar with positive results on site.

The standard price is £65 per person. If you can pay more, we encourage you to pay a solidarity price of £95, or feel free to specify the amount you would like to pay in addition to the standard price. If you cannot afford the standard price you could pay a reduced price of £35. If you are unemployed and in receipt of benefits with no other income or economically inactive with limited income, we have two free places.




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