“The leaf particles act as tiny sponges in soil, soaking up water from large pores to create a micro-habitat perfect for the bacteria that produce nitrous oxide.”
Not as much N2O is produced in areas where smaller pores are present. Small pores, such as in clay soils, hold water more tightly so that it can’t be soaked up by the leaf particles. Without additional moisture, the bacteria aren’t able to produce as much nitrous oxide. Small pores also make it harder for the gas produced to leave the soil before being consumed by other bacteria.
Every time you till, what are you creating? Large pores.
Decomposing leaves are a surprising source of greenhouse gases | MSUToday | Michigan State University