Biochar Absorption of Nutrients

Biochar Absorption of Nutrients

I wanted to activate some virgin biochar with microorganisms and nutrients before adding it to some new substrates I was formulating. Without activation I was concerned that the new biochar would rob the surroundings of it’s cations and leave the plants in the substrate with less nutrients. I also wanted to observe if the biochar was adsorbing nutrients in the tea or just absorbing the tea. So I made a tea, consecutively placed 3 sacs of virgin biochar in the tea, took samples of the tea out after every sac of biochar activated to see the difference in color of the teas. This would tell me something about what biochar was absorbing and adsorbing from the tea.   On June 23 2011 I started the procedure: Contents of Liquid Tea 8gal of coopebrisas compost and 2gal of lombris humus (older), 35 gal of decloronated water, 1 gal of molasses, 1 gal of fish emulsion, .5gal MM All were placed in a 55 gal tank and injected bubbles on the bottom for two days. . First Sac of Biochar Activated I then added  the 1st sac of 20gal of biochar (5.5pH) with a weight on the top to hold it submerged. The sac was full. Laid flat the sac measured 60x100cm. OBSERVATIONS – lots of bubbles after the 1st BC was in tank for one day. During the making of the tea there were really no fermentation bubbles on the top of the liquid. I took the first sac out 2 days later. . Second & Third Sac of Biochar Activated I added the second sac and took it out 2 days later as well. I added a third sac but it was only 60% full (13gal) of BC otherwise it would not be able to be submerged below the liquid since much of the liquid was gone, due to the first 2 sacs absorption. I took the 3rd sac out 2 days later as well. After the 3rd sac was submerged for 2 days, what was left in the tank was rice hulls and a bit of more of the solid components of the Coopebrisa’s compost, the bubble tubes and approximately 10 gal of liquid tea. There was approximately 35gal to begin with. This means 25 gal of liquid was absorbed by the 53 gal of biochar in the 3 sacs. 25 gal of 53 gal = 47.2% The Biochar Absorption of Water test calculated a 55.2% liquid absorption capacity of biochar. So this test shows a bit different water absorption capacity. . The Tea Samples Taken After Each Activation So what I found very interesting was the difference in the coloration of the teas samples that were taken immediately after i took out each of the 3 different sacs of biochar. There was a markedly difference in the color of the teas. They progressively got lighter in color. I am hoping Gabi Soto, a BC researcher at Catie University here in Costa Rica will duplicate the experimenter noting more exact data and analyze the liquids and biochar afterwards. Activating biochar could be an important improvement for biochar use if more was known about it.  ...

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Biochar Absorption of Water

Biochar Absorption of Water

Inoculating Biochar after pyrolysis with microorganisms and or nutrients is recommended by almost every expert that you will study. This is because biochar has a high CEC, (Cation Exchange Capacity). A substance that has a high CEC with no cations adsorbed to it will soak up the first cations that it comes in contact with. If freshly pyrolysized biochar is placed directly in a substrate or soil it will rob the surroundings of it’s cation nutrients, leaving the soil and or substrate with less available to the plants.  I wanted to know just how much biofermentation and or water a certain amount of Biochar absorbed when inoculated. So let me give you the results here at the top of the post Results: 500ml of biochar absorbed 276 ml of water (55.2% by volume) or 106gr of biochar absorbed 276 gr of water (260.4% by weight) Here is how I got to these figures:   I started out by filling a 500ml glass jar with biochar and weighed only the biochar. . I then filled a 500ml plastic cup with 500ml of water and poured it in the glass jar with the biochar. The glass jar held the biochar and an extra 406ml of water. The extra 94ml of water was left in the cup. . I let the BC with water in the glass jar sit for 24 hrs and then drained the water from the jar. . Of the 406ml poured into the jar with the biochar, 130 was drained out after 24 hrs. Therefore there was 276ml of water absorbed by the biochar sample. . Results: 500ml of biochar absorbed 276 ml of water (55.2% by volume) or 106gr of biochar absorbed 276 gr of water (260.4% by...

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Organic Liquid Fertilizer R&D | Fish and Soy Fungus

Organic Liquid Fertilizer R&D | Fish and Soy Fungus

After filtering and separating the to and bottom levels of precipitation, the top portion of the fermented liquid fertilizers of fish and soy were placed in 97 parts water, with 3 parts (3%) FLF. After 24 hours there was no change in the buckets (fungus showing) But after 48 hours there was a change. The images below were taken 48 hours after the mix. On the top of the solution there was fungus growth. . Image below left is fungus in fish solution (49hrs).  Image on right is the soy solution (49hrs). click to enlarge . . Both images below are close ups of soy solution fungus click to enlarge . . Eight hours later (57hr), there was a lot more growth. . fish solution 57hrs closer look. click for a better view, closer up . Soy solution close ups....

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Protocol | Liquid Fertilizer Production R&D

Protocol | Liquid Fertilizer Production R&D

Selection, Fermentation, Filtering, Extraction, Formulation, Field Test, Packaging, Research and Development is not only the most important aspect of new products, it is the most rewarding as well. In regards to Live Organic Liquid Fertilizers we have 7 stages that must be functioning optimally before going to market. The abovesteps are done in the order listed in the early stages of development. But many times a loop back must be done in order to correct or improve a later step. You might say something like” back to the drawing board” to describe what I mean. . Selection of Plants A bit of pre-research is initially done to see which plants might be good candidates for a particular fertilizer’s “job”. For example, when creating a growth fertilizer for the initial stages of growing a larger amount of nitrogen will be needed, not to mention a list of other major and minor elements. Fish and soya will have a lot of proteins that, when broken down by microorganisms will give us this needed NO2-, nitrate. . Fermentation by Beneficial Microorganisms All Organic Fertilizers are made by organic technology. As are many state of the art medicines, only microorganisms can produce these intricate molecules. You might say that the needed nitrogen is a simple molecule and I would have to agree. But being produced by a bacteria not only gives us a special form of nitrogen that the plant can absorb, it is produced in a sustainable low energy method. Beyond the Nitrate needed, microorganisms, will also produce antibiotics, phenols and metabolites that only… only they can formulate. The organisms that are used to make the bio-reactor work are classified as Beneficial Microorganisms or BMs. There are basically two groups of microorganisms, BM and pathogens. Very few BMs will turn on the harmony and become pathogenic . It is a wonder of nature that the two groups are so distinct. Most BM’s work as a colony or group, in unison to create a healthy aura around a plant. . Filtering The Fermentation Filtering is merely a mechanical method, to separate the larger undigested particles from the well reacted bio-ferment. There are simple and sophisticated methods to accomplish this. But to keep the manufacturing foot print at a minimum we try to use a simple method that uses simple filtering after a lengthy “curing time”. This curing allows the bio-ferment to complete its organic process. . Extraction of the Final Components...

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Organic Liquid Fertilizer R&D | Extraction

Organic Liquid Fertilizer R&D | Extraction

To begin understanding the possible extraction techniques that could be employed on the various FLF (Fermented Liquid Fertilizer) products, a test was set up using FLF and different concentrations of H2O. Test Description; . Image #1,   0 hrs The first image, 0 hrs, shows 4 different sets of flasks with 4 flasks in each set. Two different products are being tested, fish and soya ferments. The Top and Bottom of each product was used. Top and Bottom refer to the product being filtered with a fine poly-fiber filter, then let to settle for at least 12 hours. The products separated into two distinct parts, Top and Bottom. The flasks each can hold 150ml. The 1st flasks in each of the 4 sets was placed 30ml of the FLT. The second flask 60ml, the 3rd flask 90mm and the 4th flask contains 120ml. Fish Top; 4.4 pH Fish Bot; 4.35 pH Soya Top; 4.15 pH Soya Bot; 4.12 pH The ppm of ions was more than our Hanna instrument could read at 2000ppms, in all products NOTE; The screen being used for filtering is a cerographic screen called 180 mesh. This is the finest mesh available in the cerigraphic industry. The mesh is extremely durable and easy to clean. . Image #2, .25 hrs The flasks were then topped off to its full capacity of 150ml with dechlorinated H2O, with 5.9pH, containing 29 ppm of ionized particles. So the percentages of each product in relation to H2O was; flasks FLF H2O first 20% 80% second 40% 60% third 60% 40% fourth 80% 20% . Image #3, 2 hrs two hours after initiation for test the FLF are almost settled. . Image #4, 12 hrs Twelve hours into the test there is no more settling. . Image #5, 72 hrs Seventy two hours after initiation it looks as though the soy top liquid went back into solution…? . Image #1; test start; 0 hrs. . Image #2; .25 hrs after test initiation . Image #3; 2 hrs after test initiation . Image #4; 12 hrs after test initiation . Image #5; 72 hrs after test initiation . Image #5; 72 hrs after test initiation close up . The below images are a mix made of top precipitation of fish and soy at 3% in water. Notice the way the soy was mixing in the first image. The second image was taken a few minutes later, comparing the two solutions. ....

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Organic Liquid Fertilizer R&D | Filtering

Organic Liquid Fertilizer R&D | Filtering

  You will find in the following posts a history of how the flow of product development proceeded over the first months. It was a time to accustom ourselves to the general characteristics of  a few plant  bio-fermentation. Filtering Research & Development | First Month Basically all the stages of R^D work hand in hand. Take for example soya, papaya/banana and fish. These are 3 products with very different physical characteristics. The fish and the soya have in common protein, which, when broken down by fermentation with bacteria and fungus, provide high concentrations of nitrogen. The papaya/banana contain enzymes and potassium, phosphorus and other nutrients ideal for the flowering stage of plant growth. but lets not get caught up in nutrients. fermenting and filtering to come to a clean and proper stage for the next step of extracting the nutrients we are wanting, has a lot to do with particle size. Particle size is a physical characteristics that needs to be understood in relation to both the fermenting and filtering stages. In the bellow examples you will see different liquids of different products settling to different levels of residue. Much of what you see below and how they settle ha sto do with how the product was prepared before being placed in the fermentation vat. Fish… was chopped in very large whole peaces Soya… coarsely grounded to a medium sized meal Aloe… was finely liquified Papaya/banana… was mashed therefore it had very small particles due to its soft texture Fish Filtering Trials What I see here is very little difference in strained and unstrained samples. The slow strain was left overnight dripping slowly with no help from pressure or movement forcing it through the fine mesh. This would be way too long of a process for larger quantities.I would speculate that letting the product settle as a separation procedure would be the best method Let me mention that the fish was almost whole when placed in fermentation. I would imagine the bacteria was mineralizing the outer layers of the fish. Therefore small particle was the only size in solution. There was no ground particles placed in the fermentation tank. . Soya Filtering Trials Soya was ground, unlike the fish. It responded to the filtering a bit better than the fish. But when the soya was forced through the mesh by agitation, the results of filtering were no better than unfiltered. . Different Grinds of Misc Products . Palm seed, Aloe and Heart of Palm The below 3 flasks left to right are; palm seeds aloe heart of palm (palmito) The aloe was liquified in a blender before fermentation. Apparently the un-fermented particles passed through the fine mesh and so continued some fermentation after filtering. It makes me feel that  the fermenting needs to be done with larger particles or effect a complete fermentation before. . Fermentation Sample Below is a fermentation test not filtering. Equal amounts of soya were placed in a flask with different amounts of water. What I found interesting is the middle layer of participation in the 4 parts of water flask. . Filtering with Adgitation There is a rod and paddle going down inside the barrel and filter rotating rather quickly. The FLF (Fermented Liquid Fertilizer) fish emulsion has a thicker consistency than most other FLFs. So a paddle was used inside the filter tank, rotating rapidly to move the condensed particles that could not move threw the mesh away from the filter. This allows more FLF to pass by the screen for filtering. Above you can see a prototype of this tank and paddle....

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