Classification Of Crops

Crops refer to plants that are cultivated and grown by humans for various purposes, typically for food, fiber, or other commercial uses. Common crops include grains like wheat, rice, and corn; vegetables like tomatoes, carrots, and potatoes; fruits like apples, oranges, and bananas; and cash crops like cotton and tobacco. The cultivation of crops is […]

Crops refer to plants that are cultivated and grown by humans for various purposes, typically for food, fiber, or other commercial uses. Common crops include grains like wheat, rice, and corn; vegetables like tomatoes, carrots, and potatoes; fruits like apples, oranges, and bananas; and cash crops like cotton and tobacco. The cultivation of crops is a fundamental aspect of agriculture and plays a crucial role in feeding and sustaining human populations worldwide.

Crops can be categorized based on (1) life cycle, (2) morphology, and (3) uses.

Classification Based on Life Cycle:

The life cycle of a crop spans from seed planting to crop maturity. Crops can be divided into three groups:

  1. Annual Crops: These crops complete their life cycle within a year, such as cotton, cowpea, yam, and rice.
  2. Biennial Crops: These crops grow and complete their life cycle within two years, including cassava, pepper, onions, carrot, and ginger.
  3. Perennial Crops: These crops take more than two years to grow and complete their life cycle, such as banana, orange, cocoa, and coconut.

 

Classification Based on Morphology:

Crops are classified based on their structure (form and shape):

  1. Monocotyledonous Crops: These crops have seeds with only one seed leaf (cotyledon), parallel veins in their leaves, and a fibrous root system. Examples include maize, rice, millet, wheat, oil palm, and grasses.
  2. Dicotyledonous Crops: These crops bear seeds with two seed leaves (cotyledons), have leaves with net veins, and possess a tap root system. Examples include mango, orange, cowpea, groundnut, kola nut, and pepper.

 

Classification Based on Uses:

Crops are classified according to their practical applications:

  1. Cereals: Grown for their grains or seeds rich in carbohydrates, belonging to the grass family, e.g., maize, millet, rice, wheat, oat, barley, and guinea corn.
  2. Legumes (Pulses): Grown for protein-rich seeds or grains, e.g., cowpea, groundnut, soya beans, and pigeon peas.
  3. Roots and Tubers: Produce underground tubers rich in carbohydrates, e.g., cassava, yam, potato, and carrot.
  4. Vegetables: Grown for leaves, fruits, or roots rich in vitamins and minerals, e.g., tomato, lettuce, okro, amaranthus, and cabbage.
  5. Spices: Rich in vitamins and minerals, used for flavoring food, e.g., pepper, ginger, garlic, onions, and curry.
  6. Beverage Crops: Used in making beverages, e.g., cocoa, coffee, tea, and kola nut.
  7. Fruit Crops: Plants bearing edible fruits rich in vitamins and minerals, e.g., oranges, cashew, guava, and watermelon.
  8. Oil Crops: Produce edible oil when processed, e.g., cotton seed, coconut, oil palm, groundnut, and shea butter.
  9. Latex Crops: Produce latex used in making materials like tires, plastics, and foam. Example: rubber tree.
  10. Fibre Crops: Produce fibers for making clothes, ropes, and sacks, e.g., cotton, sisal, jute, hemp, and kenaf.
  11. Drug Plants: Grown for medicinal purposes, e.g., tobacco, neem, and Indian hemp.
  12. Forage Crops: Grown to feed ruminant farm animals, e.g., stylo, cowpea, and guinea grass.
  13. Ornamental Crops: Grown for beautifying the environment, e.g., hibiscus and morning glory.

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