Introduction to agriculture

General Information

Agriculture Fields

The term Agriculture is derived from 2 Latin words i.e.

  1. Ager means land or field
  2. Cultura means cultivation

It means the Agriculture is the process or methods which deals with the study of cultivation of our Land or field for growing of crops.

Again Agriculture is also defined as an art and business of producing crops and raising or breeding of Livestock for economic and commercial purpose.

Derivation of term “AGRICULTURE”

Branches of Agriculture

Literally, Agriculture is mainly classified into 7 Branches. i.e.

  1. Agronomy = The term Agronomy is also derived from 2 Greek words i.e. (1) AGER means soil or Land & (2) NOMOS means management. so, Agronomy is a branch of Agriculture which deals with the study of management of soil or lands for growing of crops.
  2. Horticulture =
  3. Forestry =
  4. Animal Husbandry =
  5. Fishery Science =
  6. Agriculture Engineering =
  7. Home Science =

Important Inventions and their Inventor

In Agriculture, we mainly learn or study about various types of crops, different agro-climatic zones in India where that crops can be grown, also learn about soil, season and selection site where crops can be sown.

Crops

Barley
wheat crops

Literally, crops are that cultivated Plants that can be grown in large scale for large quantity.

there are several types of crops that grow in India. some are-

  • Cereals = eg- Rice, wheat, maize, barley
  • Vegetables = eg- Potato, Tomato, Onion, okra
  • Fruits = eg- Mango, Litchi, Papaya, Guava, Coconuts

Their Classification

Crops grown in our Country India; are classified on 5 Basis-

(1) Based on their Life cycle = Scientifically, Life cycle is referred as Ontogeny. ONTOGENY is the origination and development of an organism; Usually from the time of fertilization of egg to the organism’s matured stage. However the term can be used to refer to study of entirely of an organism’s Lifespan.

on the basis of ontogeny, crops are divided into 3 types:

(a) Annual crops = Life span of crops are one season or one year. eg- Rice, wheat and maize

(b) Biennial crops = Life span of crops are two season or two years. eg- Beetroot and sugar beet.

(c) Perennial crops = Life span of crops are more than 2 years. eg- coconuts.

(2) Based on Economic Use = economic use is also known as agronomic use.

  • CEREALS = Cereals are that kind of crops that are grown in large scale only for humans. cereals are full of starchy food and they are good source of carbohydrates and other elements. for example- Rice, wheat, oat and maize.
  • PULSES = Pulses are also one kind of crops that are grown in large scale for human and pulses are good source of proteins. for example-Black gram, green gram.
  • OIL SEEDS = Oil seeds are also comes under the crops type. The main purpose of growing this is to obtain oils from these crops. for example-groundnut.
  • MILLET = Millet is a type of crops as well as cereals. Millet are grown in large scale for human use as well as animals forage. for example- Sorghum, pearl millets.
  • FORAGE = Forage are the crops that are grown only for animal’s feed. for example-grasses and sedges leaf.
  • FIBRE = the crops that are grown for obtaining fibre to make rope, clothes etc. for example-cotton and jute.
  • MEDICINAL = the crops that are used to prepare medicines. for example- aloe Vera, Tulsi and Neem.

(3) Based on Season = On the Basis of season; crops are divided into 3 groups. i.e.

(a).KHARIF CROPS = the crops that are grown in kharif season. for example- Rice, maize and Groundnut.

(b).RABI CROPS = The crops that are grown in Rabi season. for example- Wheat, Mustard and Barley.

(c).ZAID CROPS = the crops that are grown in Zaid season. for example- cow pea and green gram.

# season- (1). kharif, (2). Rabi and (3). Zaid.

CLIMATIC CONDITION OF SEASON-

(a). Kharif =Warm wet weather / shorter day length for flowering.

(b).Rabi = cold dry weather / Longer day length for flowering.

(c).Zaid = Dry weather / Day length for flowering.

(4) Based on Climate = The crops are classified a/c to their growing geographical region; They are of 4 types-

(a). Tropical = coconut and sugarcane

(b). Sub-Tropical = Rice and Cotton

(c). Temperate = Wheat and Barley

(d) Polar = All pines and Pasture grass

(5) Based on Botany

fruits and their botanical name:

Coconut = cocus nucifera

mango = mangifera indica

date palm = Phoenix dactylifera

papaya = carica papaya

apple = Malus domestica

Vegetable and their botanical name:

onion = Allium cepa

Beet root = Beta Vulgaris

Spinach = spinacea oleracea

Garlic = Allium Sativum

Turnip = Brassica rapa

Pea = Pisum sativum

Chilli = capsicum annum

Factors affecting crop Production

There are several factors that affects the growth and Production of crops. that we shall be discussing now,

(1).Climatic Factor = It includes Temperature, Relative Humidity, Wind velocity, Atmospheric gases and Solar Radiation,etc.

  • Temperature = The degree of Hotness or Coldness of any substances is known as its temperature. The range of Temperature for maximum Growth of crops is between 15 to 40 degree Celsius. the Temperature at which the plant growth be high is referred as their optimum Temperature.
  • Relative Humidity = It is a Ratio between the amount of moisture presenting the air to saturation capacity of the air at a particular temperature.

Formula of Relative Humidity (percentage) = Actual vapor pressure / Saturated vapor pressure X 100.

The suitable R.H. for any crops or plants is 40 to 60%

  • Wind Velocity = Wind is a horizontal movement of air. suitable wind velocity for any crops is 4-6 km per hour. Wind velocity is the atmospheric quantity by moving of air from high to low pressure, usually due to change in Temperature.

the device which is used to measure the wind velocity is termed as ANEMOMETER. The term is derived from Greek word anemos which means wind and meter means To measure. ANEMOMETER is also a common weather station instruments.

modern ANEMOMETER
Traditional ANEMOMETER
  • Atmospheric Gases = These are that gases which present in our earth’s atmosphere. An Atmosphere is a layer of gases surrounding the earth.

There are many Gases present in our Atmosphere, i.e.

  1. CO2=0.03 %
  2. O2 = 20.95 %
  3. N2 = 78.09 %
  4. Ar = 0.93 %
  5. Other = 0.02 %
Solar light fall to plants
  • Solar Radiation = Solar Radiation is that radiant energy emitted by sun due to nuclear fusion reaction inside the sun. If more intensive solar light is fall into plant their photosynthesis rate will be increased and if less intensive solar light is fall into plant their photosynthesis rate will be decreased.

Day Length for Plants = It is the Physiological reaction of Plants to Length of night or dark period.

It has 3 types-

(1)Short Day =Day length is < 12 hrs. eg= Rice & cotton.

(2)Long Day = Day length is > 12 hrs. eg= Oat & Barley.

(3)Day neutral = there is No or Less influence on day length. eg= Tomato & maize.

(2).Genetic Factor = Genetic Factors are defined as those factor which affect the growth and development of plants involving their Genes, Chromosome no., the genomes and all other that determine the gene expression with the exclusion of environmental factors such as Wind Velocity & Solar radiation etc.

(3).Biotic Factor = Biotic Factor mean all the living Factor that have Life.

they are classified mainly as 2 types-

  • FLORA= Flora is all the Plants of a Particular place or from a particular time. It has complementary nature among field crops when they grown together.
  • FAUNA= Fauna is all of the animal life present in a particular region or time. The corresponding term for plants is flora. Many Insects such as Honey bee, Wasps help in cross pollination in plants or crops which is a part of plant’s reproduction. and with their help, yield of crops be increased and they are considered as beneficial organisms.

(4).Edaphic Factor = Edaphic factors refers to all those factors which are related to soil and allied properties.

Some Edaphic factors are discussing below with full description:-

(a) Soil moisture = Soil moisture means the presence of any concentration of water particles into our soil.

  • The total available water holding capacity is the portion of water that can be absorbed by Plant roots.
  • It means the amount of water available, stored or released b/w the field capacity and the permanent wilting point water contents.
  • Mainly 3 types of water present into earth soil:- (1).Gravitational water, (2).Capillary Water, (3).Hygroscopic water.

(b) Soil Temperature = Soil temperature is an important plant growth factor like air, water and nutrients. Soil temperature affects plant growth directly and also indirectly by influencing moisture, aeration, structure, microbial and enzyme activities, rate of organic matter decomposition, nutrient availability and other soil chemical reactions. Specific crops are adapted to specific soil temperatures. Apple grows well when the soil temperature is about 18 degree Celsius, maize 25 degree Celsius, potato 16 to 21 degree Celsius, and so on.

  • Soil Temperature also controls the microbial activity.
  • It influences the rate of absorption of water and solutes.
  • It also affects the physical, chemical and biological process going on into the soil.

(c) Soil Organic matter = Soil Organic Matter is the Organic Matter component present in our soil, consisting of plants and animal residues at various stages of decomposition, cell and tissue of soil organisms, and substance synthesized by soil organisms.

  • Soil Organic matter improves the texture of soil.
  • Soil Organic Matter’s effects on soil functioning includes improvements related to soil structure, aggregation, water retention, soil biodiversity, absorption and retention of pollutants, buffering capacity, and the cycling and storage of plant nutrients.
  • Soil Organic Matter increases soil fertility by providing cation exchange sites and acting as reserve of essential nutrients, especially nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and sulfur (S), along with micro nutrients, which are slowly released upon Soil Organic Matter mineralization.
  • The mass of Soil Organic matter in soils as a percent generally ranges from 1 to 6% of the total topsoil mass for most upland soils.
Soil components

(d) Soil minerals = Minerals are naturally occurring solids with a definite chemical composition and crystal structure. “Solid substances composed of atoms having an orderly and regular arrangement” and those minerals that are present into soil is called as Soil minerals.

for example- Clay minerals: hydrous alumino silicates, Haematite, Goethite; Limonite, Gibbsite .

Soil

The term SOIL was derived from the Latin Word “SOLUM” Means FLOOR.

  • Literally soil refers to the loose surface of the earth as identified from the original rocks and minerals from which it is derived through weathering process.
  • Soil is a material which supplies all the nutrients required for plant growth.
  • A/c to Dokuchaiev, Soil is a natural body composed of mineral and organic constituents, having a definite genesis and a distinct nature of its own.
    Layer or Horizon

 

See Also


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It is Arpan Priy Das from west champaran, Bihar. Arpan started his blog about agricultural information named as “ECOHILLAGRI.COM ” He started his blog ecohillagri.com to help many agricultural or other students as well as farmers. so, it is necessary for them to learn about agriculture that is useful for students as well as farmers and that all concepts are present in this blog.

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