The Woodchip Handbook is the essential guide to the many uses of woodchips both in regenerative agriculture and horticulture. Author Ben Raskin, Head of Horticulture and Agroforestry at the Soil Association, draws on his extensive practical experience using woodchips, provides the latest research from around the world, and presents inspiring case studies from innovative farmers.
The book explores and unlocks the tremendous potential of woodchips to enhance soil health and plant growth:
- As a natural mulch for weed suppression, temperature buffering, and water conservation
- As a growing medium for propagating plants
- As a decomposing source of warmth for hotbeds in the greenhouse or hoop house
- As a carbon-rich compost ingredient that supports beneficial fungi and microorganisms
- As a powerful soil health booster, when applied as small-sized ramial chipped wood
- As an ideal substrate for growing many kinds of edible or medicinal mushrooms
- As a sustainable, versatile, and durable material for footpaths and ornamental landscaping
Some of these techniques, like mulching—or the renewable harvest potential from coppicing and pollarding trees — have been around forever. Yet there is always new science to be discovered, such as the role that salicylic acid from willow woodchips can play in preventing tree diseases or promoting livestock health when used as a bedding material.
Whether you are a commercial grower or farmer, a permaculture practitioner, or a serious home gardener producing your own fruit and vegetables, The Woodchip Handbook will show you how to get the most out of this readily available and renewable material.