Agricultural Science JSSCE Notes

Forms Of Agriculture


  • Subsistence
  • Commercial


This refers to the scale, type or level in which agriculture can be practiced. They are:

  1. Subsistence agriculture
  2. Commercial agriculture

Whichever scale of agriculture is been practiced, it usually is a crop farm, an animal or livestock farm or a mixture of both.

Crop farming involves the growing, caring and harvesting of crops such as maize, cassava, yams and beanse.t.c. for human and industrial uses while Livestock Farming is the rearing of animals examples are pig, sheep, goat, cow, chicken, rabbit etc. either or both of these farming can be done using the following systems

  1. Shifting Cultivation: This involves growing of crops in one area for two or three years and then move to another area to farm. The first area is left for up to five years or more to re-grow before it is cultivated again.
  2. Crop Rotation: This is the growing of crops on the same piece of land following a particular arrangement of the crops. It is used only on a small piece of land.
  3. Mono-cropping: This is the practice of growing only one crop on a piece of land. It enables farmers to use machines on their farms thereby increasing their productivity and efficiency.
  4. Mixed-cropping: This is the practice of growing many different crops on the same farm at the same time. It is the most common system of farming practiced by many small farmers in West Africa.
  5. Mixed-farming: This is the growing of crops and keeping of animals like sheep and goats at the same time on the same farm.
  6. Taungya Farming: This is the growing of food crops in parts of a forest where some useful trees have been removed.
  7. Ley farming: this is the practice of growing food crops and pasture crops.
  8. Nomadic farming: this is movement of livestock and their herdsmen from place to place in search of food.
  9. Ranching: this is another system of rearing animals in confinement on a large expanse of land that have natural vegetation or planted pasture for animals to feed on.


This is the farming system that provides food just enough for the farmer and his immediate family.


  1. Farmers provide just enough food to feed themselves and their families.
  2. They cultivate very small areas using simple farm tools.
  3. It is practiced by peasant (poor) farmers.
  4. It employs unskilled labour.
  5. The returns or output are usually very low.
  6. It involvesthe use of family labour.
  7. It involves little or low capital.
  8. Limited use of Agrochemicals (e.g fertilizers, insecticides e.t.c.)
  9. Mixed cropping system is usually practiced.
  10. Unimproved varieties of crops or breeds of animals are used.


  1. What is subsistence Agriculture?
  2. List five characteristics of subsistence Agriculture.


Here farmers cultivate large farm areas with the major purpose of making profit. It involves planting one type of crop in large farms called plantations.


  1. Sole cropping system of farming is practiced. (i.e. farmers plant just a crop).
  2. Large area of land is cultivated.
  3. It requires a lot of money to establish i.e. it is capital intensive.
  4. Skilled labour is required.
  5. Yield or output is usually high.
  6. Only rich farmers can be engaged in commercial agriculture.
  7. Agro-chemicals like Fertilizers are used.
  8. Huge capital is used to set it up.
  9. Improved varieties of crops are used to set it up.


  1. What are the two major forms of Agriculture?
  2. List five characteristics of subsistence farming.


  1. List and explain five farming systems?
  2. List five differences between subsistence and commercial Agriculture.
  3. Mention five tools used by subsistence farmers.
  4. List five characteristics of commercial Agriculture.


Junior Secondary Agriculture For Nigerian Schools Bk1 By A. Youdeowei, S.O Adesiyan, JN Ogbazi, Terry Olowu. Pgs8-18.


  1. Thekind of Agriculture in which farmers produce enough to feed himself and excess is sold is called? A. Subsistence Agriculture B. Mixed Farming C. Crop rotation D. Commercial Agriculture.
  2. Commercial farming is ____ intensive.  A. capital B. Labour C. Raw materials D. farm
  3. Subsistence Farming involves the cultivation of a ____ piece of land. A. small B. large C.Sizable D. workable
  4. Which of the following is Not   a characteristic of subsistence farming? A. It is practiced by peasant farmers  B. Large land area is cultivated C. Family labour is used 
  5. Only ____ farmers can be involved in commercial farming  A. poor  B. powerful D. strong 
  6. Fishes can be preserved by the following except ____ A. freezing B. smoking   C. wind drying D. salting
  7. The type of crop farming  which  involves growing of crops in one area for two or three years and then move to another area to farm is called A. Mixed farming B. Mixed cropping C. Shifting cultivation D. Taungya farming
  8. Cultivation and management of crop is ____ A. Animal Science  B. Soil Science C. Crop Science D. Surgery
  9. The type of farming which involves the growing of crops and planting of trees at the same time is known as A. Mixed cropping B. Livestock farming C. Crop rotation  D.Taungya farming  
  10. Young fishes used in breeding adult fishes are called ____ A. Fingerlings b. Prey C. Ray  D. Shark


  1. What is Subsistence Agriculture?
  2. Give three differences between commercial and subsistence farming.

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