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Pettersson Silvén, Malin, 2020. Effects of biochar on the water-holding capacity of soils : field experiments in asparagus cultivation capacity of soils on Gotland. First cycle, G2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Soil and Environment



Biochar is a residual product that is produced by combustion of organic material at a restricted
amount of oxygen, so called pyrolysis. It has been seen that biochar could have
positive effects when incorporated in soils, such as increasing the water-holding capacity
and decreasing the dry bulk density. The water-holding capacity of a soil is of interest since
the future holds a warmer climate which could result in soils being a subject of water scarcity.
Biochar could also be a useful way to sustainably store carbon to deal with global
In this report the results from a field experiment with biochar is represented and discussed.
The experiment was conducted at Stenhuse gård which is located in Klintehamn on
Gotland. Gotland is known for having problem with water scarcity and the soil at Stenhuse
gård is a sandy soil. The experiment was initiated by Waila AB and financed by the EU. The
purpose of the field experiment is to decide the effect biochar has on the water-holding capacity
in the soil.
The result from this study show tendencies of an effect from the application of biochar
on the soils water-content, dry bulk density, organic carbon and water-holding capacity. The
results show no significant effect from any of the four biochar treatments compared to the
control group. The reason for the lack of statistical significance is probably due to too few
samples taken on each trial square of the experiment on Stenhuse gård. It would likely have
been a lower variance between the observations if more samples had been conducted and
therefore the statistical analysis could have a shown a statistical significance. The experimental
design should also have focused on designing the five treatments to have only one
changing variable (in this case the biochar), since the treatments had different amounts and
types of fertilizers. More studies should be conducted to ensure the effect biochar has on a
soil after incorporation.

Main title:Effects of biochar on the water-holding capacity of soils
Subtitle:field experiments in asparagus cultivation capacity of soils on Gotland
Authors:Pettersson Silvén, Malin
Supervisor:Karltun, Erik
Examiner:Jarvis, Nicholas
Series:Examensarbeten / Institutionen för mark och miljö, SLU
Volume/Sequential designation:2020:13
Year of Publication:2020
Level and depth descriptor:First cycle, G2E
Student's programme affiliation:NK001 Biology and Environmental Science - Bachelor's Programme, 180.0hp
Supervising department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Soil and Environment
Keywords:Waila AB, water-holding capacity
Permanent URL:
Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Agricultural research
Soil science and management
Deposited On:21 Sep 2020 06:58
Metadata Last Modified:22 Sep 2020 01:05

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