It’s hard to believe just how many benefits compost provides for soil. Even when spread on the surface as a mulch, and long before it actually enters the soil, compost helps to suppress weeds, retains soil moisture in dry conditions, and protects soil from the damaging effects of wind and heavy rain.
But it’s when organic matter gets into the soil that it really starts to work its magic. Soil structure depends almost entirely on organic matter. In healthy soil, the organic humus and inert mineral particles are stuck together in tiny crumbs a fraction of an inch across. These crumbs are held together by fine fungal strands, or hyphae, and by organic glues produced by trillions of bacteria.
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