¬†One of our biochar studies, involving corn no prescription viagra and sunflowers, is moving along quite well.¬† We have managed to keep the deer and other critters out of the plot.¬† As always, we are very careful about bias.¬†¬†
In statistical terms, bias can easily create false results.¬† For example, I truly want to believe that biochar does all of the wonderful things as a soil amendment that it‚Äôs so often advertised to be.¬† So, it is very easy to, without necessarily recognizing it, make my biochar test plots look better than the plots without biochar.¬† How easy?¬† Here are some common possibilities:
- Watering the biochar plot more often, or with more water than the non-biochar plant.
- Taking the largest yielding biochar sample and comparing it against a poor-yielding non-biochar plant.
- Planting with biochar and compost on one sample but not planting the other plants with the compost.
¬†There are more biases but I‚Äôm sure you get the point.¬†
¬†Doing comparison testing is tedious.¬† Not many entities selling biochar even do these tests.¬† For me, I have to know for myself.¬† Our business is on the line.¬† Sure, we could quote other ‚Äúbiochar experts‚ÄĚ about the benefits of biochar, but there is more to any subject than what we read in a text book.¬† We don‚Äôt owe it just to ourselves; we owe it to you, our reader or customer!
¬†The pictures below describe very graphically how the entire experiment is going.¬† One picture shows me standing in corn that has an average height of about my waist.¬† This corn was planted without biochar.¬† The other picture shows me standing in corn that has an average height of almost shoulder-high.¬† This corn was planted with biochar.¬† Both plots are separated by only about eight feet.¬†
The picture below shows sunflower plants that were planted with biochar.¬† The ruler I am holding is 2 feet long.
¬†Next year, it will be a different story, as far as this garden area is concerned.¬† Another study that has been underway all summer long will conclude with a large area, which includes our corn and sunflower plots, being inoculated with biochar and compost.¬† 2012 will prove to be a very exciting year for this sample area.¬† We look forward to sharing our studies at that time!
¬†And yes, it‚Äôs the end of July and the corn is not very large at all with both plots.¬† The same is true for the sunflower plants, also shown below.¬† What gives?¬† Your guarantee of no bias!¬† The entire area was newly broken ground back in 2010.¬† The soil is void of many nutrients.¬† After tilling it up in 2010, we did add a significant amount of compost.¬† This was the first time for nearly a century that¬†this ground was broken for any type of crop.