Utilizing biochar to improve community tree vault soils and tree health and to reduce watershed contamination
2021, Rebecca Brianne Abney, PhD, University of Georgia (UGA) Research Foundation, Inc., Co-PI Julia Holly Campbell
The goal of this project is to investigate how the method of biochar application impacts tree growth and health in two tree species (Acer rubrum and Quercus phellos) that have yet to be investigated with the use of biochar as a soil amendment. Biochar is a frequently used soil amendment that can help improve soils that have been altered from many of these issues, particularly water imbalances, nutrient retention, and contamination. Unlike most previous studies, we will vary the concentration and application method of biochar and compare multiple tree species. We will plant seedlings of each species in soils across five treatments: soil only (control), soil + biochar mixed homogenously, soil + biochar above recommended lime dose mixed homogenously, soil + biochar below lime equivalency mixed homogenously, and soil + biochar at lime equivalency as top dressing. We will monitor soil quality and functioning post-planting along with quantifying the effects on tree growth and health. Finally, we will build a tool to calculate a recommended dose of biochar for a specific soil and tree growth outcome. We expect that our results will be useful for both professional arborists and residential homeowners managing their own trees.
Funding Duration: 1 year
Grant Program: Tree and Soil Research Fund Grant
Grant Title: Utilizing biochar to improve community tree vault soils and tree health and to reduce watershed contamination
Researcher: Dr. Rebecca Brianne Abney
Peer Reviewed Publications from Grant:
General Audience/Trade Publications:
For more information on this project, contact the researcher via TREE Fund at firstname.lastname@example.org.