Sustainable Agriculture : Sustainable Agricultural Farming

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Sustainable Agriculture Agriculture in the United States has changed dramatically over the centuries. Since the 1960’s large commercial farms have been leading in sales. As a direct result of their success we, as a society, have access to affordable food. However, the success of large farms has lead to many negative impacts such as increased usage of resources and decreased diversity in crop fields. This begs the question, what can be done to reduce the negative impacts of large farms. One solution growing in popularity is sustainable agriculture. The idea of sustainable agriculture is to create farms that need little to no outside help from irrigation, pesticides, or fertilizers. Sustainability can be achieved in many way through…show more content…
The “busts” occur because, by forcing a plant to have the highest yield it cause most of the energy to go into growing and not natural defense. To counteract the lower defenses, farmers heavily utilize pesticides. The Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources dubs heavy pesticide use as the “kill ‘em dead” approach which does kill non resistant pests however, pesticide usage selects the resistant strains (Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources). By using pesticides a feedback loop comes to fruition as pesticides increase resistance among pests while farmers find different pesticides in the hopes of staying one foot ahead. Trap cropping has been shown as a solution to the pesticide usage problem. While working towards a PhD in horticulture Jude Boucher, from the Tolland County Extension Office at the University of Connecticut, he experimented with trap cropping (SARE). Boucher set up a system where hot cherry pepper plants were planted around a crop of sweet bell peppers creating a “poisoned fence” protecting the bell pepper crop. By using trap cropping Boucher could use small and well-timed applications of pesticides resulting in a 90% decrease in pesticide use (SARE). Other farmers have also used trap cropping and have found an 18% increase in vine crop yields, a 96% decrease in pesticide use,
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