How do elements play a role in agriculture


What is the main purpose of Agriculture?

Although agriculture was mainly done for subsistence purposes in the early days, it has grown to include commercial farming. Agriculture has also grown to include various techniques such as crop rotation, fencing, the use of fertilizers, plantation, weeding, ranching, and breeding, among others.

What is the role of Chemistry in agriculture?

It plays a role from the basics of photosynthesis to the utilization of agricultural produce. The advancements in this practice is only because of active research carried out in chemistry and then its applications to cause the land to produce more abundantly and at the same time to protect it from deterioration and misuse.

What are the main components of an agricultural farm?

Seed 2. Fertilizer 3. Farm Power 4. Implements Machinery 5. Irrigation. Seed is technically defined as ripened ovule containing embryo. Another definition says that the seed is a living embryo which is vital and basic input for attaining sustained growth in agricultural production in different agro-climatic conditions.

What is the relationship between agriculture and industries?

In fact, there is interrelationship between agriculture and industries. Not only is agriculture a source of demand for various industrial products but it also supplies food and raw materials (such as sugarcane, jute, cotton, oilseeds etc.) to industries.


What is the main part of agriculture?

Modern agriculture includes agronomy, horticulture, animal husbandry, dairying, soil chemistry, etc. Chemistry deals with compounds, both organic and inorganic, and agriculture deals with the production of organic products using both organic and inorganic inputs Thus Chemistry forms an integral part of agriculture from molecular to organ level.

Why is fertilizer used to increase crop yield?

Appropriate use of fertilizers to increase crop yield has counterbalanced loss of land due to urbanization and significantly supported global population growth , It has been estimated that almost half the people on the Earth are currently fed as a result of synthetic nitrogen fertilizer use.

What is the process of making inorganic fertilizer?

Inorganic fertilizer is synthesized using the Haber-Bosch process , which produces ammonia as the end product. This ammonia is used for other nitrogen fertilizers, such as anhydrous ammonium nitrate and urea. Now fertilizers with slow release of nutrients have been developed.

What is the purpose of fertilizer in soil?

Fertilizers: Fertilizer is any organic or inorganic material of natural or synthetic origin that is added to a soil to supply one or more plant nutrients essential to the growth of plants.

What are the chemicals in soil that are in short supply?

Chemical fertilizers are less complex and have high concentrations of chemicals that may be in short supply in the soil namely nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium, calcium, magnesium and sulfur.

How much does not using pesticides reduce crop yields?

These chemicals prevent crop losses to insects and other pests. One study found that not using pesticides reduced crop yields by about 10%. Another study.

What percentage of crop yields are attributable to fertilizer?

A recent assessment found that about 40 to 60% of crop yields are attributable to commercial fertilizer use. Fertilizers can be divided into two categories: organic and inorganic. Organic fertilizers are derived from living systems and include animal manure,fish and bone meal, and compost.

How can agriculture help the economy?

Although rural families often make their living from many different types of work, improvements in farming have proved to be the path toward widespread, poverty-reducing growth in the rural economy. Successful agricultural transformations have focused on the farming household, providing opportunities for farmers to earn a better income. For some, that will mean raising farm productivity or shifting the mix of production to include higher-value crops and livestock. For others, the right choice will be to do less farming and take advantage of employment options off the farm. As farmers have more money in their pockets, they spend more in the local economy, creating jobs, opportunity, and more demand for agricultural goods. The question is how to accelerate, sustain, and scale these growth cycles. For that, a well-crafted agricultural plan is required as part of a country’s overall economic development approach. There are six elements that distinguish a superior agricultural plan.

What are the drivers of agricultural transformation?

The drivers of agricultural transformation are multidimensional, interrelated, and change over time, but they can be organized into categories to provide a better opportunity for pragmatic diagnostics and decision making on national priorities. After running more than 30 country diagnostics, we found that the drivers fall into three main categories. First, there are elements of “transformation readiness.” Changes to a country’s institutional framework, governing mechanisms, and political environment can significantly influence the likelihood of accelerating an agricultural transformation. Second, the quality of the national agricultural plan or strategy is critical. Last, there are drivers related to delivery mechanisms. This category focuses on what is needed to translate the national agricultural plan into on-the-ground impact. This includes the ways in which countries manage decision making and progress against targets as well as how they use change agents to support the large-scale behavior change among smallholder farmers that underpins a successful agricultural transformation.

Why is land policy important?

Land policy is often cited as a pivotal factor in determining whether a country’s agricultural transformation can simultaneously achieve sustained progress and inclusivity (contributing to widespread poverty reduction). Land policy is a good illustration of how critical it is for policies to be dynamic—changing over time to prevent transformations from stalling. For example, land ownership or tenure may be key at the start of an agricultural transformation as a way of influencing farmers’ investment in their production. However, rental markets may soon become important as some farmers move out of agriculture into other jobs and need income from their land.

Why do agricultural transformations fail?

Overly prescriptive and inflexible strategies in agricultural transformation fail because of the complexity of agriculture-based economies. For example, designing a national promotion of new varieties of high-yielding maize among smallholders, along with investment plans for storage and marketing, may not work if the storage facilities are not placed in the right locations. Suppose the production of maize in some areas outstrips storage capacity. Roads are bad, and transport to other markets is prohibitively expensive. In these areas, the glut of maize depresses the local market price, and farmers may return the next season to growing their old, cheaper varieties of maize because they lost money on the new one. A different, less top-down approach might be to enable change agents to set local targets and work with farmers who know the economics of maize production all too well. As changes begin to occur, the most critical success factor is that the plan allows for learning and that it is flexible enough to be adjusted as understanding progresses.

Why should policy makers invest in data and analytics?

Policy makers should invest in making use of existing data and analytics to comparatively assess the costs and likely outcomes of different potential transformation programs. Policy makers also need to use data and analytics to set reasonable targets and redirect programs where outcomes are not meeting targets.

What are the SDGs for agriculture?

In addition to traditional economic development and poverty reduction goals, governments are also focusing their agricultural transformation plans on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by considering, for example, climate-smart strategies, women’s economic empowerment, and biodiversity.

How can a change agent help farmers?

Change agents are people who farmers trust and interact with regularly. The high-level objectives of a transformation are realized in practice only when they are effectively translated to smaller, on-farm shifts. For example, increased productivity in the dairy sector might be achieved through farmers accessing better animal health technologies and better cattle breeds or joining dairy cooperatives to sell their milk. Change agents provide the critical interface with farmers. To catalyze this, a change agent might be the person providing extension knowledge, offering financing for farming inputs such as fertilizer, aggregating crops, or facilitating marketing services. For example, a change agent can help farmers make the transition from growing wheat to more complicated but lucrative opportunities such as raising tomatoes , vegetables, and orchard crops .

What is the role of agriculture in the economy?

Agricultural sector plays a strategic role in the process of economic development of a country. It has already made a significant contribution to the economic prosperity of advanced countries and its role in the economic development of less developed countries is of vital importance. ADVERTISEMENTS: In other words, where per capita real income is …

Why is agriculture important for the economy?

If agriculture fails to meet the rising demand of food products, it is found to affect adversely the growth rate of the economy. Raising supply of food by agricultura l sector has, therefore, great importance for economic growth of a country.

How does rural economy affect social welfare?

The rising agricultural surplus caused by increasing agricultural production and productivity tends to improve social welfare, particularly in rural areas. The living standard of rural masses rises and they start consuming nutritious diet including eggs, milk, ghee and fruits. They lead a comfortable life having all modern amenities—a better house, motor-cycle, radio, television and use of better clothes.

Why is the progress in agriculture important?

The progress in agricultural sector provides surplus for increasing the exports of agricultural products. In the earlier stages of development, an increase in the exports earning is more desirable because of the greater strains on the foreign exchange situation needed for the financing of imports of basic and essential capital goods.

How can agriculture reduce inequality?

In a country which is predominantly agricultural and overpopulated, there is greater inequality of income between the rural and urban areas of the country. To reduce this inequality of income, it is necessary to accord higher priority to agriculture. The prosperity of agriculture would raise the income of the majority of the rural population and thus the disparity in income may be reduced to a certain extent.

Why is increased agricultural output important?

It is seen that increased agricultural output and productivity tend to contribute substantially to an overall economic development of the country, it will be rational and appropriate to place greater emphasis on further development of the agricultural sector.

Why is agricultural advancement important?

Agricultural advancement is necessary for improving the supply of raw materials for the agro-based industries especially in developing countries. The shortage of agricultural goods has its impact upon on industrial production and a consequent increase in the general price level.

How to determine what nutrients are needed for a crop?

There are a few ways to determine what nutrients are needed: soil test, plant tissue analysis, yield response, and crop removal. Yield response and crop removal take careful observation and a long time period. Plant tissue analysis is a good way to determine how much of a nutrient is being absorbed by the plants and therefore depleted from the soil. Determining what has been removed by analyzing the crop yield is a way of determining what should be replaced. Plant tissue analysis (hotlink to an example) can provide valuable information but replacement of nutrients should also consider leaching and other losses. Calculating the pounds of nutrients removed from dry matter yield involves a simple equation. Multiply the average tissue concentration (determined by tissue analysis) for the specific element (usually N, P, K, and S) by the dry matter yield in pounds per acre. If the average tissue concentration for K is 1.85% and the dry matter yield of a hay crop is 8 tons, put the percentage in decimal form and the 8 tons into pounds, each ton is 2000 pounds (907 kilograms): .0185 X 16000 pounds (7257.5 kilograms) = 296 pounds (134.3 kilograms) of K removed.

What is the most important element for grass?

Nitrogen is the most critical element for grass plants because it is often deficient and yields obvious benefits. N fertilization on forages generally increases yield and crude protein content of cool and warm-season grasses. Stored carbohydrates are reduced, which produces a more succulent plant. Plants normally contain between 1 and 5% N, absorbed as nitrate (NO3-), ammonium (NH4+) ions and urea. Nitrate is most often available but must be reduced to NH4+ or NH3 for plant utilization. Too much nitrogen may result in animal disorders related to high nitrate, alkaloid content, or hypomagnesemia. Some plants also are more susceptible to lodging, disease, or insect invasion.

How to know if soil is good for plants?

A soil test is the best way to know if the soil can provide these elements to plants. A soil test is a chemical method of estimating the capacity of the soil to supply nutrients. Taken every 4 years to monitor soil acidity and fertility, a soil test can be a very helpful tool before forages are planted. Soil tests determine what nutrients are in the soil; not the plant uptake, which can be measured by plant analysis. Technology is developing more accurate ways of soil sampling resulting in efficient, environmental-minded, and scientifically sound fertilizer application. But the basic guidelines include several highlights. Soil test samples should be taken every 2.5 – 5 acres (1-2 hectares) and in areas of different geophysical features (hillsides, soil types, areas managed differently) to represent the entire field, but should avoid small unusual spots. Dig out a sample of soil from plow depth unless a shallower height is needed as in cases of renovation. Avoid contaminating sampling tools with fertilizer or soils from other spots. Do not use galvanized, brass, or bronze tools when planning to request information on micronutrients such as zinc. Place the collection of samples into a clean container and mix thoroughly. Fill a sample bag with soil and fill out needed information. Do not use paper bags for the composite sample. Each sample should be about 1 pint of soil consisting of subsamples taken from 15-20 locations. Record information about the samples and locations. Keep a map of soil sampling over the years to develop a real sense of the soil history and potential fertilizer application. Label them before sending them to a soil testing service. Request what tests you want performed since each test costs money.

What is the S concentration of a plant?

Sulphur (S) is absorbed by plant roots as a sulfate ion SO42-. Plants can be dusted with elemental S. Normally, S concentrations range between 0.1 and 0.4%. Deficiencies in S result in retarded growth: stunted, thin-stemmed, and spindly plants. Some confuse a S deficiency with a shortage of N because of growth problems. Sulphur problems show up first in younger leaves while N problems show up first in older leaves. S is crucial to proper plant amino acid functioning.

What is the concentration of potassium in plants?

Potassium (K) concentration in vegetative tissue usually ranges from 1 to 4% of dry matter. Plants absorb N and P in compounds but the K+ ion is absorbed as K+. K influences enzyme activity, water and energy relations, transpiration and translocation, and N uptake and protein synthesis.

What is the role of phosphorus in plants?

Phosphorus (P) makes up about 0.1 and 0.4% of a plant and is involved in energy storage and transfer, root growth, early maturation, quality, and disease resistance. Plants absorb H2PO4- or HPO42- orthophosphate ions.

Do legumes need nitrogen?

Legumes, however, can fix their own nitrogen from the atmosphere. Nitrogen application is not recommended for legumes. Adding nitrogen decreases the nodulation on legume roots and the amount of N fixed by the plants. There is no yield increase of tissue nitrogen percentage when legumes are properly inoculated. Legumes usually require more K, S, Mo and B than grasses. Since the nutrient needs of grasses and legumes differ, use fertilizers to manage a grass/legume mixture. Adding K, S, Mo, and B will favor legume growth. Grasses crowding out legumes or the invasion of weedy species may indicate decreasing levels of K. K has shown to increase stand longevity in addition to yield and quality. When managing a mixed sward, fertilization can do more than just increase yield. Remember the differences between grasses and legumes. Determine which species are desired as dominant in a mixture. What kind of mixture best meets the animal requirements? Do other limitations determined by geophysical factors (soil, weather, elevation) favor grasses or legumes?

What are the physical factors that affect farming?

Topography, soil, and climate are the major physical factors affecting farming. Topography/Relief – Topography relates to how difficult it is to till the land, soil erosion, and poor transportation networks and facilities. Agriculture can be mechanized depending on the topography of land to be used.

How does water affect agriculture?

Water and Rainfall – Water promotes animal and plant life. The availability of water affects crop growth and development, and thus yield. Water irrigation can double farm yields, increasing the number of crops grown in a single year. However, different crops require varying amounts of water to grow and develop.

Why do farmers get subsidies?

Subsidies – Farmers receive subsidies from the American government to support the growth of commodity crops such as soy and corn. The modern federal agricultural policy assumes that mass production through farming keeps the prices of food low. As a result, it benefits the economy.

What is farming in the Neolithic period?

Farming is the practice of keeping animals and growing crops for raw materials and food. It is an important aspect of agriculture. Started centuries ago, agriculture is as old mankind, but nobody knows its exact age. Farming in the early century gave rise to the Neolithic Revolution.

How does light affect plants?

Light – Light is critical in plant photosynthesis (the process of manufacturing food in plants as sugars) and chlorophyll (the green pigment in plants) production.

What are the factors that affect farmers?

However, some are independent and thus able to develop markets through innovative strategies and direct sales. Subsidies, commodity prices and immigration laws and labour are the major economic factors affecting farming.

Why is farming so competitive?

The farming environment today is economically complex and competitive. It allows farmers worldwide to choose what to grow from what’s produced globally. On the other hand, governments offer financial incentives to farmers on specific types of crops. Most farmers in America are affected by weather and economic factors.

What are the most important inputs for agriculture?

After reading this article you will learn about the most essential inputs required for agriculture:- 1. Seed 2. Fertilizer 3. Farm Power 4. Implements Machinery 5. Irrigation.

What are the inputs of agro-industries?

The agro-industries supply inputs to agriculture to sustain modern techniques in agricultural production like fertilizers, plant protection chemicals, now a trend is towards the indigenous products like neem products and bio-parasites and also the processing of the agricultural produce, like oil extraction, hulling, preparation of fruit products into processed goods like jelly, jams, pickles etc.

What is irrigation in agriculture?

In the rainy season if the spread of rainfall is evenly distributed and rains in the right intensity the crops are raised as rainfed crops, if the rainfall is erratic and insufficient then supplemental irrigation is needed. In the Rabi season, during the period of receding monsoon irrigation is needed which depends on the nature of the crop and its requirement.

What fertilizer was used in the traditional agriculture?

Fertilizer: In the traditional agriculture nutrient supply to plants was from the organic sources except a few fertilizers like sodium nitrate, (NaNO 3, or ammonium sulphate (NH 4 SO 4) was used which were used by progressive fanners otherwise farm yard manure, compost and oilcakes like neem were applied to soil.

Why is soil testing important for fertilizer?

To achieve economy and efficiency in fertilizer use soil testing is important. The original fertility level of soil as it is formed from the parent rocks and their reaction and interaction which result in soil types.

What was progressive farming?

The progressive farmers were involved and registered as seed growers and the cooperative societies for storage and marketing. These farms were 2000 in 1971. Department staff was to maintain check on quality of seed at every stage. Periodic reviews brought out the weakness of the programmes.

What are the implements used in Indian agriculture?

There are a variety of implements used in the modern scientific agriculture but the most basic implements used in Indian agriculture are: Khurpi, sickle, spade, pickage, desi plough, patella and other local models are—local, models of hoes, harrows, cultivators, seed drill (malabasa) etc.

Why is agriculture important in economic development?

The role of agriculture in economic development is crucial because a majority of the population of developing countries make their living from agriculture. We explain below the role of agriculture in detail and point out in what ways agriculture can …

How can agriculture be used to help industrial growth?

Agriculture can also be a major source of saving or capital for industrial growth of developing countries. Even, in poor developing countries, as income from agriculture is unequally distributed, rural people with high incomes can invest their savings for industrial development. In Britain at the time of industrial revolution rich landlords voluntarily invested some of their savings in growing industries. Besides, small farmers can deposit their small savings in banks operating in the rural areas and then these banks can provide loans to the industrialists for investment purposes.

How does agriculture help in eradicating poverty?

In any strategy of eradication of poverty agricultural growth plays an important role. Agricultural growth raises the productivities and incomes of small and marginal farmers, and raises and employment and wages of agricultural workers. With this, it helps to reduce poverty and disguised unemployment.

Why do farmers need to produce food?

Farmers in these developing countries have to produce food over and above their subsistence needs so as to provide necessary food to their urban population. If the industrial and services sectors have to grow, the food requirements of the workforce employed in them have to be met by the marketable surplus of the farmers. As the industrial and services sectors develop further, the agricultural productivity and production must also rise to sustain the industrial development by feeding the increasing industrial workforce.

What is the Lewis model of development with unlimited supplies of labour?

In Lewis “Model of Development with Unlimited, Supplies of Labour,” mobilisation of surplus labour (i.e., disguisedly unemployed) in agriculture for expansion of modern industrial sector and capital accumulation has to be made for employment in expanding industries. The smaller the wages of labour, the lower will be the cost of industrial sector which will bring large profits to the industrialists which can be ploughed back for further industrial development and capital accumulation.

What would happen if the productivity of agriculture did not rise?

If with industrial development, productivity of agriculture does not rise sufficiently and imports of food-grains are not possible due to non-availability of sufficient foreign exchange, the terms of trade will turn heavily against the industrial sector and as several models of growth point out the growth process will eventually stop because industrial production will become unprofitable.

When did the marketable surplus come from the farmers?

If agricultural productivity does not rise the marketable surplus for industrial growth has been obtained by some countries through coercion as was the case in Japan at the time of Meiji Restoration (1869) when through compulsory taxation marketable surplus was extracted from the farmers. More conspicuously, marketable surplus was forcefully collected from kulaks (small class of rich landowners) in 1920-21 during Stalin’s Collectivisation Scheme.

What is the role of weather in agriculture?

The Role of Weather—and Weather Forecasting—in Agriculture. Most people know that the weather has a significant impact on the agriculture industry. Indeed, crops need the basics of moisture, warmth, and sun to thrive.

What are the four areas of farming that are fundamentally affected by weather?

While farmers must make many day-to-day decisions related to weather conditions, there are four primary areas of farming that are fundamentally affected impacted by weather: Crop Growth/Irrigation: Crop growth, or crop yield, requires appropriate amounts of moisture, light, and temperature.

How does weather affect pests and diseases?

Pest and Disease Control: Certain weather conditions encourage the development and growth of pests and diseases, which can destroy crops. Forecast guidance incorporated into pest and disease modeling can help determine whether—and when—it’s appropriate to apply pest or disease controls. Wind forecasts also play a role in this decision, as crop dusters, aircraft that spray fungicidal or insecticidal chemicals on plants from above, must be utilized when wind conditions are not apt to cause sprayed chemicals to miss their targets.

Why do we use weather forecasts?

Weather forecasts can be used to ensure that fertilizer is applied in the right conditions— when it’s dry enough so that it doesn’t wash away (which would create a waste of resources and money) but moist enough so that it gets worked into the soil.

What is the timing of fertilizer?

Fertilizer Timing and Delivery: One of the many decisions that farmers have to make is determining the proper time to apply fertilizer, as well as the application rate and fertilizer form to use. A misapplied application caused by weather can wipe away the entire field’s profits. Weather forecasts can be used to ensure that fertilizer is applied in the right conditions—when it’s dry enough so that it doesn’t wash away (which would create a waste of resources and money) but moist enough so that it gets worked into the soil.

What is irrigation planning?

Irrigation planning is a good example. If a farmer relies on a forecast for precipitation that turns out to be accurate, he saves the cost of unnecessary irrigation. And by having a good idea of the expected amount of rain over a period and irrigating just enough to allow crops to thrive, he will maximize yield.


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