Mid-Latitude Agriculture

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Mid-Latitude Agriculture

Grain farming

Commercial grain farming; Commercial grain farming is developed in a small number of regions of the world and commercial grain farmers primarily concentrate on wheat. The major regions( of commercial grain farming in the world include

  • (a) one in Eurasia stretching for 3,220 km from Kiev in southern Russia to Omsk in western Siberia. This is by far the largest commercial grain farming region in the world;
  • (b) Prairies which encompasses the U.S. and Canadian states of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Dakotas, Kansas, Illinois, Iowa and also the Pacific States of Oregon and Washington;
  • (c) Argentina in South America is the third region;
  • (d) Southern and Southwestern parts of Australia.

    Latitudinally commercial grain farming is a mid-latitude activity and is confined to the regions between 30° and 55° in either hemisphere. Commercial grain farming covers only 5% of the earth's surface. Though wheat is the predominant grain, other crops are also raised, such as oats, rye, barely, corn, flax, wild and tame hay, and all too scarce vegetable gardens and fruit orchards.

    In Russia the winter wheat is grown in the area just north of the Black Sea, the spring wheat in eastern European Russia and western Siberia, north of 25 cm mean annual rainfall line. This area is also noted for growing 10% of the world's flax seed and nearly 13% of the world's barley. Vast tracts of highly fertile chernozem soil, high degree of mechanization, and collective farms represent the traits of extensive machine agriculture.

    The semi-arid, as the region of commercial grain farming in North America is concentrated in three main regions

  • (a) The spring wheat region of north central United States and Canada;
  • (b) The hard winter wheat region of central United States; and
  • (c) The Columbia plateau.

    Rainfall, temperature and sunshine, to a large extent, determine the success or failure of crops. In addition to this, are the impediments like frozen sub-soil, poor drainage, early fall forests, pests and diseases etc.

    The Argentina belt of commercial grain farming is exclusively situated in the temperate pampas, west of Buenos Aires. The physical environment is highly favorable for grain farming. In the east lies the corn area whereas in the drier western portion is the WHEAT CRESCENT, bending around the populous area to the east.

    Australia has two distinct zones of commercial grain farming. The first one, specializing in wheat extends 1,062 km inland from Adelaide in the general vicinity of the Murray-Darling river basins while the other one lies in the southwestern extremity of the continent.

    Next: Millets and Sorghums

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