Biochar is a high quality form of charcoal produced from sustainable sources in an energy efficient way and used for any purpose that does not result in the immediate release of carbon back into the atmosphere. This is the definition given by the International Biochar Initiative in 2010 – but all you need to know is that it is a fantastic soil additive for your farms, lawns and gardens.

It is formed from biomass which is heated in the absence of oxygen. When this happens, a process called pyrolysis leaving behind a very stable, high carbon, charcoal-like product.

When biochar is applied to soil it has a number of benefits, including increasing the water holding capacity of your soil. It can also enhance nutrient holding capacity, reducing the need for fertiliser application and enhancing plant growth, and subsequently health and yield of your plants.

GreenManChar_bag of biochar

Photo of our product:
Green Man Char Biochar

What can I use it for?

Biochar is a fantastic soil additive – when added to soil it enhances water holding capacity, and can increase the nutrient retention capability of your soil. This means that it can reduce the need for watering your garden plants and reduce irrigation requirements for your crops. As a result, it can also potentially reduce your need for fertilisers.

Consequently, biochar is receiving a lot of attention in other industries. Some people have investigated its use as a livestock feed, in water filtration and even in construction materials!

If you are interested in the uses of biochar and want to find out more see our Tips and Tools page on the website and the factsheets we have developed at Green Man Char.

How does it help my Soil?

The key to biochar’s effects on soil is in its intricate structure and high surface area.

When created, the biochar retains the structure of the plant cells, providing an intricate network of tunnels and pathways in which water can flow and soil microbes can attach and grow.

The surface charges of the char also help bind a number of key nutrients, helping prevent nutrients leaching out of the soil and entering water sources in the surrounding area.

Biochar is best utilised when first inoculated with nutrients. This could be through creating your own ‘superchar’ or by mixing it with compost!


Tree planting with biochar

Tree planting with Biochar

Biochar and Climate Change

Find out more about how Biochar helps the planet by combating climate change by mitigating greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere.

100% Sustainably Australian

Our biochar is produced in innovative pyrolysis units developed by Earth Systems, based in Melbourne, Australia. It is produced from 100% Australian biomass feedstocks and from 100% sustainable sources. We believe this is important to ensure that our biochar production does not come at the expense of our country’s great forests, ecosystems and unique biodiversity.

Biochar Benefits

  • Natural Soil Conditioner
  • Retains Nutrients in Soil
  • Optimizes Water-Holding Capacity
  • Improves pH of Acidic Soils
  • Enriches Soil Ecosystems
  • All-natural & chemical free

The History of Char

Biochar has a very long history, being found in soils in South America after being put there by ancient American civilisations thousands of years ago. Find out more information about the Wonder of Char.

Biochar: The Oldest New Thing You’ve Never Heard Of

Watch this fantastic TEDx talk titled “Biochar: The Oldest New Thing You’ve Never Heard Of” on the history and the future benefits of Biochar. Find out what a difference biochar makes.

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