What Do Farmers Grow?

What Do Farmers Grow?

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Farming is the systematic process of producing substances for human and animal nutrition, and other substances through the cultivation of plants. The most valuable agricultural products produced on farms are rice, corn, and wheat. The countries that produce the most food are China, India, the United States, and Brazil.

Corn

Corn is an annual plant from the Poaceae family and is native to Central America. It has played an important role in history, especially among the peoples of Central America. It was brought to Europe in 1493, and according to some sources in 1535. Today, more than 500 different industrial corn products are produced.

Its root is fibrous, and the tree is tall and articulate with separate male and female flowers. Its fruit is a cob with a grain that is mostly yellow or white. A large number of different types of hybrids have also been bred. Its length of vegetation from germination to full ripening depends on the characteristics of the variety.

According to the length of vegetation, all corn hybrids can be classified into early, medium early, and late vegetation plants. The basic economic importance of corn derives from the properties of the plant itself, the variety of uses, and the volume of production. Almost all parts of the corn plant can be used for processing, so this is what gives corn special economic significance.

The minimum temperature for germination of corn seeds is 8°C. Temperatures below -1°C regularly lead to plant decay. Better nutrition with potassium and phosphorus increases the resistance of corn to low temperatures. Low temperatures, and especially frosts in the autumn, can slow down ripening, interrupt vegetation or even damage grain germination, which is very dangerous in corn production.

Corn seeds need to soak up about 45 percent of the water to begin to germinate. A need for water increases at the time of intensive vegetative growth. Extremely dry soil most commonly occurs on sandy soils. When soil moisture decreases below 10% of maximum water capacity, corn stops growing. Corn thrives best on deep, fertile, and structural soils, weakly acidic or neutral reactions, good thermal, water, and air regime.

Cotton

Cotton originates from the area of Indochina, the equatorial part of Africa, Peru, and Mexico. It ranks first among fiber production crops. Fiber is formed on the seed.

Cotton has a well-developed root system. The main root is spindle-shaped and penetrates the soil quickly. Depending on the type of cotton, it can grow between 70 centimeters and 2 meters, and perennial cotton can grow up to 6 meters.

Cotton can be grown in areas where the air temperature does not fall below 0°C for six months. The length of cotton vegetation is between 110 and 150 days. The minimum temperature for growth and development is 15°C, and the optimal between 25 and 30°C. It has the greatest need for heat during flowering and fruit formation.

It consumes a significant amount of water and it is a basic factor that determines the number of quills per plant and the yield of cotton. The most intense period of water uptake is during flowering and fruit formation. It tolerates drought relatively well due to its deep root system. Cotton is a plant of deep, moderately fertile, structural, and warm soils. It thrives best on sandy alluvial soils.

Cotton harvesting is done by hand or machines and begins when 60-70% of the quills are open. To reduce impurities and increase the efficiency of cotton harvesting, crop defoliation needs to be performed beforehand. After picking the quills, the long fiber is separated from the seeds by aggregation machines and the short fiber by linter machines. After that, each fiber is baled separately.

Fruit

The fruit is the collective name for the seeds or fruits of mostly perennial trees and shrubs and botanically differs from vegetables in that it has a seed-like structure that arises from a fertilized flower, while vegetables develop from other parts of the plant.

The fruit is grown on all continents and thrives in all areas where for certain species there are appropriate climatic conditions and favorable soil composition. It is considered a high-value food. Ideal places for raising orchards are sunny positions that are protected from direct wind, and most species prefer slightly acidic and well-drained soil.

Fruit trees can be planted in the fall and during the winter or early spring. The only thing that matters is that the soil is not too wet or frozen. After planting the seedlings, it is recommended to fence the orchard because young fruit trees are a delicacy for various rodents. Once planted, the fruit trees should be regularly maintained later, and the procedure varies depending on the species being grown.

Apple is the basis of fruit production and serves as a basis for comparing the profitability of growing other fruits. Its fruits ripen from the earliest summer until winter. This fruit has almost everything that the human body needs: fruit sugars and fruit acids, vitamins, minerals, pectins, and completely pure water. The apple requires deep soil, sandy-loamy composition, enough humus and mineral nutrients, and good field water capacity.

Wheat

Wheat is used in the milling, food, and pharmaceutical industries. It is the most important crop and it has been planted on one-quarter of the world’s arable land. Globally, it is the most important grain plant used for human consumption and is second on the scale of total grain yield production.

Wheat grains are the main food product used to make flour for bread, cakes, pasta, and for fermentation to make beer, alcohol, vodka, and biofuels. Wheat is planted in a certain area as fodder plants for livestock or as a construction material for making roofs.

The quality of flour and other processed products depends on the chemical composition of the grain, which in turn depends on the type and quality of wheat, ecological growing conditions, and production technology.

According to the method of cultivation, wheat species and varieties are divided into two basic groups: winter and spring wheat. Winter wheat tolerates more moderate winters. Spring wheat is grown in northern areas, at higher altitudes, and in dry continental areas, because they have a short growing season and tolerate drought much better than winter ones.

Rice

Rice is a cereal distributed mainly in tropical and subtropical regions of Asia and Africa. It is one of the oldest cultures in the world and originates from Southeast Asia. It was cultivated in China several thousand years BC.

Rice can be successfully grown in humid tropical regions and areas with moderate climates, and a sufficient amount of water is important for successful cultivation. By processing grains, chaff, rice flour, sprouts, and broken grains are separated. Rice flour is a concentrate for cattle feed, and sprouts are a great food for chickens.

Rice is the essential food of populated tropical regions of Asia and Africa. The grain is rich in carbohydrates, and also contains proteins, fats, vitamins, and many minerals. Rice is easily digestible and has high efficiency. The largest rice producers in the world are China, India, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Vietnam, and Thailand.

Vegetables

Vegetables are a common name for cultivated plants and their parts that serve in the human diet. Vegetables are rich in carbohydrates and proteins and as such are an indispensable part of the diet. Depending on the species for nutrition, whole plants, or only individual parts (root, stem, and leaves) are used.

Vegetables, thanks to their high content of vitamins, minerals, cellulose, and low-fat content, play an invaluable role in the diet. The amount of vitamins and minerals varies from species to species, as does the climate in which vegetables thrive.

Vegetables have 65 to 95% water (potatoes and legumes deviate from these percentages). The aroma of some types of vegetables comes mainly from essential oils. Although vegetables are rich in various ingredients, they do not have a high energy value because they contain few carbohydrates, proteins, and vegetable fats.

Vegetables are most commonly divided into:

·         Leaf vegetable – cabbage, spinach, kale, etc.,

·         Root vegetables – potatoes, carrots, parsley, celery, beets, etc.,

·         Bulbous vegetable – all types of onions and garlic,

·         Flower vegetables – cauliflower, broccoli, artichokes, etc.,

·         Fruit vegetables – cucumbers, pumpkins, eggplants, beans, etc.

Soybeans

Soybean is an annual plant from the legume family. Soy is used to make tofu cheese, soy milk, burgers, hot dogs, bread, and sweets. Tofu cheese and soy milk have a long tradition in human nutrition in China, East, and South Asia, and in recent years are increasingly accepted in other parts of the world.

Whole seeds prepared as a stew or canned are also used for human food. Oil, flour, lecithin, and other products are obtained from the seeds. Soybean oil is used in the food industry, for salads, mayonnaise, margarine, and gelatin. Most of the soybean seeds in the world are used as cattle food.

Soybeans thrive best on deep, structural, fertile soil, rich in humus, with good water and air properties, on which no crust is formed and the pH reaction 7. Soybeans are one of the best pre-crops for many field crops.

Soy proteins, compared to animal proteins, reduce the risk of developing kidney disease and have a beneficial effect on kidney health. Tofu, soy cheese is produced by coagulating hot soy milk and can be a good source of calcium when used as a coagulant. It can be consumed raw or cooked.

The largest soybean producers are the United States, Brazil, Argentina, and China.