What Are The Different Types Of Agriculture? – Detailed Guide

When you think of agriculture, the first things that likely come to your mind are farmland and crops. If you live in the city and decide to drive in the country, you look at the empty fields and farms. Therefore, the first thing that comes to your mind is the term “agriculture.”

However, it is not uniform, and there are several methods to classify it as well. A few things in the criteria regarding agriculture are the intensity, type of crop, scale, the means of distribution of the produce grown on the farm, and mechanization level.

Let’s now go into further detail about the different types of agriculture.

What Are The Different Types Of Agriculture?

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Specialized Horticulture

There is very little farmland when it comes to highly urbanized and dense areas such as cities like New York City, London, or Paris. Therefore, farmers in urban areas have to create specialized garden plots to grow flowers and crops. They are small, and they are not your typical definition of farmland because there is only so much room in urban settings.

However, specialized horticulture can be the same as large garden settings that you can see at parks or residential properties. This form of agriculture is quite successful in urban areas of France and Hungary when farmers use it for vineyard cultivation.

Subsistence Farming

When you see some large crops or livestock in the countryside, and there is a farmhouse in the middle of the field, then there is a good chance that is an example of subsistence farming. That is when the farmer keeps the crops and livestock for their families and sells the surplus produce or animal products privately or may trade them.

Preindustrial agriculture worldwide has practiced this form of farming, and it is still quite common today. However, it is not as common as it once was due to the changes in farming in Russia, where this form of farming was the most commonly practiced.

Commercial Grain Farming

In areas with low humidity and rainfall and a small population, commercial grain farming is the most common agriculture type. That is because the crops that can only survive in drought conditions are grains and wheat. The lands that support this form of farming are the prairies, temperate grasslands of Australia and South America, and steppes.

Those areas receive very little rain, and therefore, they are the ideal pieces of land to grow grains such as wheat. However, that means those places could not support the growth of vegetables and fruits for obvious reasons – there needs to be ample rainfall.

Farming For Livestock

Sometimes agriculture has nothing to do with growing crops and has everything to do with livestock. Areas of the world where there is a lot of land for animal grazing and low rainfall areas are responsible for their livestock.

Farmers use animals for meat, wool, as well as dairy products. There are different forms of livestock farming. First, you have nomadic herding where the animals stay on the move and go from one region to the next. Then there is livestock ranching, where the farmers keep the livestock in one area.

Shifting Cultivation

You don’t hear about shifting cultivation happening in areas that are not tropical. Instead, farmers use the land in a forest for farming when it is the most fertile until it dries up or fills up with weeds. When that happens, the farmers begin to do their farming in another area of the same fertile forest and have virtually no weeds.

This form of agriculture is manual, and it only happens in tropical locations such as the Caribbean and Southeast Asia. However, environmentalists are pressuring farmers to stop and choose other farming methods.

Mediterranean Agriculture

The Mediterranean region has rugged land, and the crops that farmers grow there are wheat, citrus fruits, and vineyards. Their livestock consists of small animals as well. The ideal time for growing crops in this region is during the winter, as the Mediterranean receives plenty of rain during the colder months.

It is a rarity for the area to end up with snow. Another significant activity in this region is horticulture. Therefore, farmers do not only grow crops and manage livestock as they are producing plenty of flowers.

Rice And Commercial Plantations

The tropical or subtropical areas of the world grow rice and coffee, tea, palm oil, and rubber. The products developed in these lands are essential for their commercial value, so it is necessary to keep the grounds fertile to produce the products that much of the world needs.

Regions in Latin America, Africa, and tropical areas in Asia are responsible for growing these products in other parts. Heavy precipitation is required to maintain the rice, especially.


Now you know where your food comes from; you realize that there are various types of agriculture worldwide. Some of the food and drinks you have cannot thrive where you live if you happen to live in a colder climate. If you are a coffee or tea drinker, they only get to you because of importation.

The sandwiches you eat consist of the wheat grown in regions that receive very little precipitation. Therefore, a tremendous variety of food and other products exist because of the various agriculture types worldwide.

Thus, the farms that you see nearby are not the same type of farms that you would see in other areas of the world.

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