As the title suggests, after twenty years of hunting, reading articles, scientific journals, debating and missing out on machines, I’ve finally managed to acquire a Terravent.
Whats a Terravent then?
Back in the day, 1998 according to this article, Kew gardens wheeled these things out as part of their “Conservation of Heritage Tree Programme”. These things were used to shoot nitrogen gas into the soil, via a probe, and fracture the compacted soil, leaving open fissures to allow improved water percolation and gaseous exchange.
Once you’ve blown the soil to bits you can inject liquid amendments into the hole to further improve the soil and help the trees.
Pretty damn impressive stuff!
Fast forward 22 years and while these things aren’t made any more, or used at Kew because they can’t get bits, they are still capable of doing the job they were designed to do and as such I kept looking, and finally one came up.
She was a bit battered around the edges and didn’t have any lights, hence the light board but after a few days of messing about, it now looks like this.
A vast improvement on the old signwriting, dont you think?
So far it’s been tested in the garden, down the field in the wet compacted bits and out on two jobs, proving the concept and showing that tree care doesn’t and shouldn’t always involve chainsaws, and will be a vital addition to the fleet, along with the air spade and soil auger.
I’ll be refining the liquid mix to suit different sites and conditions but have found a good biochar from soilfixer to pour in the probe holes. This will help keep them open and provide some additional organic material, although I am going to try a few other things mixed in with it as time progresses.
If you think this machine will help yours or your customers trees then drop us a message and we’ll see what we can do to help.