How do green manures work?

Green manure crops act mainly as soil acidifying matter to decrease the alkalinity pH of alkali soils by generating humic and acetic acids. Incorporation of cover crops into the soil allows the nutrients held within the green manure to be released and made available to the succeeding crops. This results immediately from an increase in abundance of soil microor-ganisms from the degradation of plant material that aid in the decomposition of this fresh material. Microbial activity from incorporation of cover crops into the soil leads to the formation of fungal mycelium and viscous materials, which benefit the health of the soil by increasing its soil structure by aggregation. The increased percentage of organic matter improves water infiltration and retention, aeration, and other soil characteristics