Biochar helps Napa Valley farmers boost soil health.

Forget diamonds — Napa Valley’s farmers are chasing after a different kind of carbon-based rock. Biochar, a form of charcoal, has been used for thousands of years as a soil amendment in the Amazon basin, and now, vintners are advocating for its use here in California.


Seavey Vineyards in St. Helena learned about the process from Napa County RCD and now produces its own biochar, which it mixes with compost they make onsite from goat and sheep manure, grape skins, and downed leaves.

“Napa RCD taught us how to do the burns in a way that produces the biochar so we can recycle it into our compost and into our soil,” said Fred Seavey. “[Miguel] came out and did a demonstration for us for our removed diseased vines … So now we have expanded that to the stuff we are doing here in the forest.”

Link to full article here.