Organic compounds are natural molecular combinations that have been created as a result of organism growth and decomposition. This should not be confused with nonorganic elements like water and minerals, which are natural but not actually related to organisms. Much of agriculture is concerned with maintaining the proper balance of organic compounds, or using organic compounds to solve a particular crop problem.
One of the traditional uses of organic compounds is to replenish the diminished nutrients in crop soil. Growers do this in several ways. Crop rotation switch between different kinds of crops every few years. Different plants use different types of nutrients, and by switching back and forth, the soil can build up necessary organic compounds through crop decomposition. Growers can also manually add different organic compounds, such as phosphate, to the soil to help replenish the biomatter in the soil.
Synthetic organic compounds are chemicals that have correlations in nature, but are produced scientifically instead of naturally. These compounds are often used in organic pesticides designed to remove pests but not cause as much damage to the environment as fully synthetic chemicals that are not already found in the environment. Some growers also use fully natural versions of organic compounds, like Kaolin clay, to protect their crops from fungi and insects. While plants do not need these compounds to survive, they do offer a necessary layer of protections so crops can grow healthily.
Fungi live in crop soil and grow among crop plants. These beneficial fungi, known as Vesicular Arbuscular Mycorrhizal, create symbiotic relationships with the plants that make it easier for plants to absorb nutrients and water. Growers add this fungi to help enrich the soil and promote healthy plant growth.