Bio-char questions

I often end up with a pile of charcoal from burning brush piles . I'd like to incorporate some of it into the soil in the wife's rose garden and into my food garden . How fine does it need to be ? Are chunks somewhat smaller than a briquet OK , or do I need to pulverize it before working it into the soil ? Most of it is already pretty small , around teaspoon sized , with some fines and some bigger chunks .
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Terry Coombs wrote:

i'd leave it as it is. we need all the soil carbon sequestration we can get. the larger chunks will be around for hundreds or thousands of years.
if you are only using a small amount it doesn't matter, but if you are going to put a larger amount on a garden it is usual practice to run it through the compost heap to give it some nutrients and bacterial/fungi so it doesn't end up pulling them from the garden soil. in the raw state it's a sink for a while.
the more you pulverize it the larger the surface area and that means it will bind more nutrients and hold more bacterial/fungi but that also means it won't last as long.
songbird
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On 19/06/2015 11:31 PM, Terry Coombs wrote:

It, and the very fine ash, are both wonderful resources and never used to be wasted in times past before humans climbed on the manufactured chemical merry-go-round and when they still knew the value of real manure and other natural products.
In winter we heat our house with wood and use a wood burning stove for cookign on and heating our water. ALL the wood ash and carbon chunks can be spread round the garden just as they come from the ash pan. The only restriction is that you sprinkle it round like you were putting icing sugar ('confectioners sugar' in USian) on he top of a cake and don't ever put it on thickly.
I do sometimes sieve out the carbon chunks using a garden sieve so that I can use them to lay over soil in the Spring to (hopefully) result in warmer soil earlier by having the black carbon to the top of the soil. I'm not sure if it works but that's my theory and it sure hasn't done any harm so far.
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Fran Farmer wrote:

Kewl ! We also heat with wood , and I usually put the ashes into the compost pile . Some were spread on the rose garden in late spring .
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On 20/06/2015 11:32 AM, Terry Coombs wrote:

I have read from someone whose gardening prowess I admire, that Peaonys LOVE wood ash in a very big way. I've only started giving mine a regular does of ashes though quite recently so can't vouch for the veracity of that claim.
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Fran Farmer wrote:

The peonies I planted didn't come up ... but it wasnt like I bought them , a friend gave us a few pieces of root that we found while we were digging up other stuff . I don't think those came up either . But that's alright , we've got 2 kinds of Iris , roses , tulips , gladiolus , and the roses for perennials , plus some marigolds and whatever bee-friendly plants that actually come up - some of them also perennials . Oh , and I almost forgot all the daffodils , there are 4 different kinds out there .
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