Sharing is caring!

The Relationships in Dirt:

Soil, dirt, is about relationships. “Soil is probably the most complex ecosystem on earth. It has physical and chemical properties, structure and integrity and a single handful may be home to more than a billion organisms.” (1)

This earth matter grows only living life. Most of this amazing population can only be viewed under a microscope.  These soil organisms flourish when the soil is in good health. They help convert organic matter and soil minerals into the vitamins, hormones, disease-suppressing compounds and nutrients that plants need to grow.

Soil components: mixture of various mineral particles, organic matter, water and air. Did you know that a handful of soil is about 25% water and 25% air? Both are needed for the organisms to thrive and complete their tasks of conversion as mentioned above. Plants get Nitrogen from the air an essential nutrient. Large pore spaces created by decomposing material and excretions allow water to get to the roots.

Organic matter: the soil matter that remains after most decomposition has taken place. Humus, for ex. is a brown or black complex variable material resulting from partial decomposition of plant or animal matter and forming the organic portion of soil. Humus comes from the Latin: earth, ground and is essential to the fertility of the earth. It’s interesting to note that the word “humble” comes from the Latin humus too.

After you have your soil test results then apply soil amenders as natural as possible.

(1): D. Pettinelli, Assistant Extension Educator, Home and Garden Center, University of Connecticut, Storrs, Ct.

Sharing is caring!