Dumping Charcoal in my Garden
Last year, I planted a small section of my yard with squash, and it was going great, until one day I looked at it and saw a frightful mess: the squash stalks were all smooshed, the leaves were turning brown and it smelled bad.
For several years, I had grown tomatoes in the same spot, with very marginal success.
I concluded, with no scientific basis or anything to go on except what counts for me as intuition, that maybe the ground was sick.
Late last fall, I smoked some meat and had a grill going simultaneously, so we had a lot of charcoal and burnt-up wood bits left over. Taking a cue from the Maya, whose slash-and-burn agricultural technique continuously replenished the soil with nutrients, I dumped the charcoal onto this problematic part of the yard.
Wednesday, wandering through a local garden store, I spotted some bags of carbon bits which, I understood from the label, were to be used to cleanse the soil in a garden. This confirmed my belief that maybe, just maybe the charcoal and burnt-up wood bits would help this patch of my garden…so I rototilled the spot, mixing up everything up. Have not yet planted anything there, but will.
Might there be any merit to this approach?