Organic matter is a barometer of soil health. The population of organisms that is supported by soil organic matter is of immeasurable benefit to plants. More Organic matter means more decomposers that recycle nutrients from plant and animal residues faster; more nitrogen fixing and mineralizing bacteria; more beneficial organisms that help dissolve mineral, translocate water from soil depths and help control pathogenic fungi; and more humus that increases the water and nutrient holding capacity of the soil. Humus acts like a sponge in the soil which expands and contracts as its moisture level changes. This activity within the soil increases porosity, which improves the movement of air and water. As all these organisms travel through their own life cycles, they create even more organic matter.
Organic matter is so important because it increases the life span of any given soil by inhibiting weathering forces such as wind and water from destroying it beyond its most productive stage.
MicroSoil® works best when the soil’s organic matter is a minimum of about 2% (1% is required by the plant and the other 1% is required by the microorganisms). The reason for this is that the nitrogen serves the microorganisms as much as, if not more than it serves the plants. Therefore, if there is only enough nitrogen (i.e. 1%) in the soil for either the plant or the bacteria, the bacteria will get it.
(Reference: Edaphos: Dynamics of a Natural Soil System / Paul D. Sachs - p 146)
This is why when you test the soil and find only 1% organic matter (or about 40 lbs. of N/ per U.S. acre) in the soil you must add, for example, about 100 lbs of urea (46 lbs N/per U.S. acre) along with some manure or other organic carbon substance to your soil before, or at the same time you apply MicroSoil®. Note: Manure and manure teas are perfect to use in conjunction with MicroSoil® when trying to elevate the organic matter. Manure can be used with or in lieu of urea or other chemical fertilizers. Forty (40) lbs of nitrogen/per U.S. acre from other sources, organic and/or inorganic can also be used. This additional urea, manure, or other organic substances, plus the 1% (40 lbs. N/per U.S. acre) already in the soil, will raise the organic matter to 2% (or 80 lbs. of N/per U.S. acre) which MicroSoil® needs to be effective.
Manure teas are simple to make and are used all over the world. Simply take 8-10 shovelfuls of manure (i.e. cow, sheep or pig) and put it in a 50 gallon barrel of water and leave it for two (2) weeks or until it looks like tea. This can then be immediately mixed with MicroSoil® and applied to the soil. Sludge and many other natural products can be used to help raise the organic matter in the soil.
With increasing use of animal manures and/or other organic residues, you can substantially reduce the need for chemical fertilizers as MicroSoil® aids in the building or organic matter, whereas chemical fertilizers reduce the amount of organic matter in the soil.