Organic matter is the dynamic soil component. It is the ‘powerhouse’ of nutrients that are essential for plant growth.
With the exception of carbon and oxygen, all of the necessary plant nutrients are supplied from the soil, and the breakdown of organic matter has a major role in their supply.
In addition to the supply of nutrients, organic matter is essential for the retention and supply of water in the soil. Organic matter can particularly benefit both clay and sandy soils, by retaining water in a way that makes it available to plants.