Detail 1

Organic matter is anything that contains carbon compounds that were formed by living organisms.  There are 3 main components of organic matter in soils:

  • dead forms of organic material - mostly dead plant parts
  • living parts of plants - mostly roots
  • living microbes and soil animals

By far the largest component is the dead matter - it constitutes about 85% of all organic matter in soils. Living roots make up about another 10% and the microbes and soil animals make up the last few percent. 


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