Today, let us know more about modern farming methods and technologies that will revolutionize farming.
Agriculture in Asia comprises of predominantly traditional procedures. However, compared with the other foreign countries, the agricultural processes have moved ahead in the West. The primary difference between both traditional techniques and modern techniques is the use of technology in agriculture. Technology has a vast scope in agriculture, and slowly yet steadily, there is a shift that we can observe. But still, it is not at par when you compare it with the other countries. The primary reason behind this is the lack of awareness among the farmers in Asia.
Here, we discuss the modern technology methods for farming.
In modern farming systems, farmers believe they have more central roles. Thus, they are eager to apply information and technology and control most system components, unlike traditional farmers. Modern machines can manage the hard work of farmers.
Modern Farming Techniques – Aeroponics
Aeroponics is growing plants in an air or mist environment without utilizing soil or an aggregate medium. It is a subset of hydroponics. It works by suspending plant roots in the air and misting them with nutrient water. This method can provide better control over the amount of water used throughout the growing process. Still, it may leave plant roots vulnerable to pathogens if not carefully controlled.
Aeroponics system culture is very different from conventional Aquaponics, Hydroponics, and in-vitro growing techniques. Hydroponics uses a liquid nutrient as a growing medium and essential mineral for maintaining plant growth. Aquaponics utilizes fish waste and water. Aeroponic farming does not require any medium for growing. You can consider it to be a type of hydroponics since water transmits the nutrients.
Aeroponic systems are more cost-efficient than other systems. They require a reduced volume of solution throughput. The requirements for fewer nutrients and water makes this system as ideal one. This makes it different from other nutrient delivery systems. The need for substrates and many moving parts are removed.
A few of the benefits of using Aeroponic farming include:
- Cost-effectiveness since you won’t have to spend money on irrigation channels.
- Ease of working with plants
- Aid in disease-free cultivation as limited plant-to-plant contact. Moreover, if a plant does become infected, it can be removed from the support structure without disrupting the other plants.
Modern Farming Techniques- Aquaponics
On the other hand, aquaponics is a closed-loop system that relies on the symbiotic relationship between fish and plants for fertilization. On the one hand, fish waste accumulates in the water providing the nutrients essential for plant growth, while the plants naturally clean the water. It provides a balanced and less controlled environment.
Aquaponics combines hydroponics (cultivating plants in water) with conventional aquaculture (raising aquatic animals such as snails, fish, or prawns in tanks) in a symbiotic environment. In normal aquaculture, animal excretions can accumulate in the water, thereby increasing the toxicity. An aquaponic system is a dependent on different live components to work effectively. The three main live components are plants, fish (or other aquatic creatures), and bacteria.
Benefits of Aquaponics:
- All nutrients extraction takes place from fish waste.
- No use of chemical fertilizers.
- Efficient, sustainable, and highly productive technique.
- Earth-friendly and sustainable integrated method.
- Eliminates soil-borne diseases.
Modern Farming Techniques – Hydroponics
The hydroponics method is a soil-less type of agriculture technique as it does not require any soil to grow. In place of soil, it uses water as its growing medium. It essentially involves growing healthy plants without using a traditional soil medium by using a nutrient like a mineral-rich water solution instead. A plant needs nutrients, sunlight and water to grow. In hydroponics, not only do plants grow without soil, they often develop a lot better with their roots in water instead.
Hydroponics is a subset of hydroculture. It grows plants without soil using mineral nutrient solutions in a water based solvent. Terrestrial plants can be developed when only their roots exposed to the mineral solution. The roots may be may be supported by an inert medium, such as perlite.
The nutrients used in hydroponic farming systems comes from various sources. Those can include byproducts from fish waste, duck manure, or purchased chemical fertilizers.
Benefits of Hydroponic Farming:
- By providing readily available constant and nutrition, hydroponics allows plants to rise to 50% faster than they would in soil. Also, you can harvest fresh produce from a hydroponic garden throughout the year.
- Works great for both the mature product environment and the hydroponic gardening virtually eliminates the need for herbicides and pesticides which is not possible in traditional soil gardening.
- Water used in hydroponic farm gardening remains in the system and can be reused. Consequently, this reduces the need for a freshwater supply.
- Arable land is often in a small pool, and gardening space continues to decrease. A vast option when you lack yard space or have a tiny balcony, hydroponics also lends itself well to indoor gardening.
Modern Farming Techniques – Monoculture Farming
The monoculture method involves the raising of a single crop within a specified area. Most commercial farms ie commercial farming in the USA are now monoculture in nature, with crops like soy and corn taking the top billing. This is quite an opposite view as compared to the traditional method of agriculture. Polyculture relies on multiple crops being planted within a specific area. Many indoor farms growing flowers and medicinal herbs are monoculture farms.
Monoculture is the farming practice of producing a single plant, single crop, or livestock species, breed or variety in a field or farming system at a time. In case of Polyculture, more than one crop is grown in a similar space simultaneously, and it is is the opposite of monoculture. Monoculture farming is widely used in industrial and organic agriculture and has increased efficiency in planting and harvesting.
When only one crop is grown solely in a field, it is called a monoculture farm. Monoculture farming makes it easier to sow seed, control weeds, cultivate, and harvest. It expands the size of the farm operation, and improve aspects of cost and profitability. Simultaneously, , monocultures tend to promote the use of the other five fundamental practices of modern farming.
Monocultures in grassland are recent phenomenon. Particularly, many grassland systems, like chalk grasslands and hay meadows, are more diversified. In the case of chalk grasslands, several years of grazing has given rise to this diversity.
Advantages of monoculture
- Reduced plant competition for space, nutrients, and solar radiation.
- Control of unprofitable or undesirable organisms.
- Cost reduction by controlling specialized machinery required for arable operations.
- Maximize profit from the increase of higher gross margin crops.
Modern Farming Techniques- Tissue culture
In this method , the fragments of a tissue plant are introduced into a new and an artificial environment. The fragments of a tissue where they continue to function or grow. While we may use the term tissue culture farm for both animal and plant tissues, plant tissue culture is the more specific term.
Tissue culture is the expansion of cells or tissues separated from the organism. It gets naturally facilitation via a liquid, semi-solid, or solid growth media, such as broth or agar. Tissue culture refers typically to the culture of animal tissues and cells.
Tissue culture refers to the growth of cells from tissue from a multicellular organism in vitro. The culture medium contains the relevant energy sources and nutrients necessary for the survival of the cells. The tissue culture is same as cell culture. Orchids, dahlia, carnation, chrysanthemum have been harvested using the tissue culture.
Advantages of Tissue Culture
- Tissue culture is a fast technique. You can create thousands of plantlets in a few weeks from a small amount of plant tissue.
- The new plants formed by tissue culture are disease-free.
- Tissue culture can produce plants all around the year, irrespective of season or weather.
- Very limited space requirement for increasing new plants by tissue culture.
- It helps to speed up the creation of new varieties in the marketplace.
Modern Farming Techniques- Drones
Agricultural drone technology comprises of crewless aerial vehicle applied to farming to help increase crop production and monitor crop growth. Sensors and digital capabilities can give farmers a richer picture of their fields. This information may be helpful in civilizing crop yields and farm efficiency. Have you heard about digital farming – a farming technique that uses digital technology to integrate agricultural production.
Additionally, the drone technology has existed, taking to the skies to capture collect scientific information, movie sequences, and scout territory. However, now the drones are beginning to make an impression in agriculture.
Agriculture is about to make up eighty percent of the market for unmanned aircraft in the next few decades. Consequently, invention of newer and more effective technologies have launched drones to capture the agriculture industry and lead to a future of sustainability.
- Drones have the ability to scout farm fields both quickly and efficiently. Rather than having growers evaluate areas manually on foot or by tractor, this knowledge allows farmers to understand their fields’ status in shorter periods directly.
- Thermal cameras can detect cooler, well-watered field regions and dry and hot patches. This data can be used by the farmers to adjust field irrigation and avoid wasting excess water. This capacity to increase water optimization is precious in drought-stricken areas.
- Drone technology effectively collects data which can help farmers improve crop health. Agriculture drone equipped with sensors flying over a field can regulate plant height dimensions by gathering range information from the ground below to plant canopy. It can also create vegetation index images, thereby indicating which plants are healthy and absorbing maximum sunlight.
Innovation has become more important in modern agriculture than ever before. The industry as a whole is facing huge challenges, from rising costs of supplies, changes in consumer preferences for transparency, a shortage of labor, and sustainability. Agriculture corporations have realized the need for solutions to meet these challenges.
Agriculture technology has seen a huge growth in investment, with $6.7 billion invested in the last 5 years and $1.9 billion in the last year alone. Major technology innovations in the space have focused around areas such as indoor vertical farming, automation and robotics, livestock technology, modern greenhouse practices, precision agriculture and artificial intelligence, and blockchain.
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