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Carbon Gold's enriched biochar range reaps praise from professional growers


Leading professional growers and horticulturalists have revealed that adding enriched biochar to their growing systems gives good germination and excellent plant health. By improving soil health and biology, Carbon Gold’s biochar blends have shown to increase root growth, reduce watering requirements and suppress nematodes; resulting in stronger, healthier plants and increased yields – as Carbon Gold’s 2013 highlights show.

To improve the health of their soils, celebrity, professional and amateur growers are increasingly turning to biochar-based products from Carbon Gold – a Bristol-based company producing a range of Soil Association approved, peat-free, biochar growing products. Biochar is a form of charcoal that has been used for millennia to improve soil nutrition and growing conditions.

Biochar is a simple way of capturing carbon. Converting woody waste into biochar, via a process known as pyrolysis, results in fewer greenhouse gas emissions than if it had been burnt or left to rot. The process results in a stable form of carbon that is removed from the atmospheric carbon cycle when added as a soil amendment. One tonne of carbon locked away in biochar represents three tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent being removed from the atmosphere.

Growers working with a variety of soils also found that Carbon Gold peat-free composts and personal compost mixes enriched with GroChar Soil Improver (90% biochar), performed as well as, and in some cases better than, peat.

This praise comes as the RHS urges Britain’s gardeners to use less peat and turn to alternatives such as coir. More than half of the compost sold in the UK contains peat, leading to depletion of peat bogs – an important environmental resource that keeps more carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere than forests and helps prevent flooding. [divider]


Carbon Gold 2013 highlights include:

Paul Howlett, Head of Agronomy, Wight Salads Group – leading supplier of tomatoes into UK multiples – said, “Where we have incorporated Carbon Gold Soil Improver in the very sandy soil at our Portuguese nursery we have seen a 10% yield increase and a lower level of Nematode infestation then areas that were not treated.”

Martin Kyte, Product Development Specialist, Rijk Zwaan – the world’s sixth largest seed company  –  said,
“Carbon Gold is the best. After trying several other non-peat alternatives for propagating plants, I have found carbon Gold to be reliable, easy to handle, uses less water, is easy to wet up if it becomes to dry and kind on the environment, as well as producing top quality organic vegetable plants across our entire current organic range.”

National Vegetable Society exhibitor, judge & lecturer, Mick Poultney, said,
“In trials against what I thought was the best seed compost, GroChar Seed Compost was definitely the winner and the best seed compost available today. Plus you water less often making it ideal for gardeners. I have been using the soil improver on all my raised beds and grow a range of vegetables, fruit and flowers to good effect. Being a great believer in composting and vermicompost, I also started to use the soil improver as one of my ingredients in my compost bins and my composting is now ready to use within a month.  When the worms multiply that tells me they are happy, which makes me happy!”

Jez Taylor, Market Gardener for international award winning Daylesford Organic Farm, said,
“I’ve been using Carbon Gold as our main compost for 2 years now and it continues to give high performance with low watering requirements, good germination and excellent plant health. Mixing Soil Improver with our own homemade compost we have even had some success on some trials with blocking it for larger seeds”

Andy Dibben, Farm Manager of organic veg box and wholesale suppliers, The Community Farm, said,
“Carbon Gold’s All Purpose compost has always worked really well for us and now we buy it as our commercial potting compost of choice. When biochar compost plug plants are put into soil already treated with biochar soil improver this has a positive effect on the plants.”

Jeremy Dore of online garden planner,, said,
“In our trials, we found Carbon Gold All Purpose compost to be equally effective as the peat mixes it was being compared to.  We are delighted to find such a good peat substitute which is sustainable and will be using this as our peat-free compost of choice in the future.”

Chris Gill, Chartered Arborist and Local Manager, Bartlett Tree Experts, said,
“In spring we applied Tree Protector around the roots of a walnut tree growing in an area where honey fungus was prevalent in the soil. By the end of the season not a single nut or leaf was blemished and the tree is showing no signs of infection. Early this summer we planted a new 80m yew hedge using Tree Growth Enhancer. It was a hot, dry season which should have triggered transplant stress. In fact, our client had to water it far less than expected. The hedging displayed good extension growth, its leaves are totally green throughout and our clients are exceedingly pleased!”


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Carbon Gold Biochar products being used in soil

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organicSoil Investmenttree caretree conservation
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