Under the Sun
4:27 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Human Hair Is Farmers’ Friend

That’s according to Blair Blacker, and he should know.  In this story, host Dan Grech visits a warehouse in Florida City with Blacker to have a look at a novel product– mats made from human hair.  Blacker says the mats fertilize plants better than most herbicides, plus they prevent weeds and conserve water.  The circular mats, made by SmartGrow, fit snugly around a plant’s base and biodegrade over time.

The mats are made from hair that comes from China, where it’s collected from barber shops for the wig industry.  Listen to the story to learn what the mats look like, smell like, and why they make Dan think of breakfast.
(Note: Blair Blacker, Dan’s tour guide at the hairmat warehouse, just stepped down as CEO. His successor hasn’t yet been named.)

Also, in this web extra, Dan talks to farmer Harry Grafe, of Loot Farms in Homestead.  Grafe and his partner Larry Joyce gave Dan a tour of their farm to show how they’re using hairmats to grow better sorrel and bitter gourds.