Market gardening means the commercial production of vegetables, fruits, flowers, and meats. It is known as a modern farming method to produce many food products. You may be in a dilemma about whether market gardening is intensive or extensive.
Market gardening is an intensive farming method. It requires less and low-value land to cultivate more production. By using modern technology, market gardening can produce multiple crops within a season. Besides, like other intensive farming methods, market gardening needs enormous labor.
In this context, you’ll learn all the facts and myths about market gardening. Also, I’ll teach here the whole process and necessary elements to cultivate crops through market gardening. So, let’s explore the fundamental factors of the market gardening method.
Is Market Gardening Intensive Or Extensive: Know About Market Gardening
Market gardening has become more prevalent in agriculture. Generally, market gardening is intensive because of its cultivation system. Besides, market gardening is used for producing mainly vegetables and fruits. Most farmers prefer intensive market gardening to support commercial production.1 Let’s learn about the facts and rules of intensive market gardening:
- Definition Of Market Gardening:
Market gardening refers to farming in less land with plentiful harvests for market supply. This agriculture method effectively provides various crops to urban people. Generally, producers use less land (at least one acre) for cultivating market gardening and more labor. Sometimes, it grows on some acre of land to increase crop production.
Moreover, cultivators only produce vegetables, fruits, flowers, and some additional crops like sweet corn in market gardening. These harvests are provided to the various urban markets, restaurants, and other necessary areas. To cultivate a successful market gardening, you need high technology to produce more harvest. Read The Old Farmer’s Almanac Vegetable Gardener’s Handbook to learn more about market gardening.
- History Of Market Gardening:
In the 13th century, vegetable gardening started becoming popular in Paris. People produced vegetables in little lands to grow crops for themselves. Walls or barriers surrounded these lands. After the 16th century, vegetable gardening started cultivated extensively. Also, cultivators began to sell those crops to the market during that period.
However, the 19th century is the revenue in vegetable gardening2. Scientists discovered the plant’s growth mystery and invented more technologies to increase the production rate. And finally, market gardening became familiar to the farmers. Consequently, cultivators started growing vegetables as the largest project in the 20th century. After this era, market gardening provided enormous crop demand to urban people.
- Types Of Market Gardening:
Market gardening is an intensive farming process. However, you can cultivate market gardening both intensively and extensively. So, market gardening contains two types of farming methods- intensive and extensive. Both types are profitable in suitable environments and processes. Still, intensive market gardening is more effective.
Intensive market gardening needs only a few land spaces and more labor, pesticide, and other technology. On the other hand, extensive market gardening grows in a large land area with less work and technology. Intensive gardening is suitable for cultivators to make farming more profitable.
- Intensive Market Gardening:
Nowadays, much technology has been invented in farming. Intensive market gardening is one of them. The primary purpose of intensive farming is to produce more harvest in less low-value land. That’s why you have to use more technology like pesticides, labor, irrigation, and other protection-based techniques in this process.
Besides, as intensive market gardening must produce a high production, you can use hybrid seeds and crops to make more profit. Also, to cultivate intensive farming, the farmer must invest a lot of money. The large intensive projects can grow a lot and provide crops ideally.
- Suitable Environment For Market Gardening:
Though a farmer can cultivate intensive gardening in any environment; still, it will be great to have suitable weather and land. Generally, the cultivator can control the growth and production rate in market gardening. The greenhouse is a perfect example of this type of gardening. Besides, sometimes, low-value land areas need more investment.
You can choose a better environment if it needs to reduce the investment. A suitable environment produces more harvests with less effort. However, most of the time, these land properties are situated far away from the city market. So, the cultivator must invest in adequate transportation.
- Investment And Profit Of Market Gardening:
For starting market gardening, the cultivator needs a lot of money to invest. The investment includes seeds, fertilizer, and other technologies. However, this process guarantees earning at least 10 to 20 percent or more of the retail investor. Generally, from one-hectare garden land, the farmer will get $300-$3000 or even higher.
The principal investment in this farming field is island property. As market gardening can grow in any land, the investor can choose even low-value areas. Besides, fertilizer is another essential part of this farming process. You can use animal and household wastes as fertilizer to reduce the cost of investment.
- Benefits Of Market Gardening:
Saving space and increasing production are the main benefits of market gardening. The overpopulated urban places are a suitable and practical location to cultivate an intensive market gardening project. Also, through these projects, farmers can fulfill the crop demand in city areas. Market gardening can provide vegetables and crops, including meats.
Besides, in polluted areas, these types of gardening can be the easiest option to maintain the environmental balance. It allows the cultivator to use hybrid crops to grow the production rate. You can cultivate two different types of produce together in a single land without hassle. Try Black Duck 43 Assorted Vegetable & Herb Set Bag to grow various crops.
- Drawbacks Of Market Gardening:
Though market gardening is highly effective for growing more food products, it still has some notable drawbacks4. Market gardening needs considerable labor to cultivate, especially in extensive projects. Sometimes, this immense labor becomes hard to find and apply. Besides, too much chemical fertilizer and pesticide can pressure the soil and environment.
Moreover, the Greenhouse method can grow carbon emissions in the environment. It also decreases and harms beneficial insects and other pests. Again, as this process needs a large investment, sometimes it may bear a significant loss to the cultivator because of natural disasters.
6 Reasons Why Market Gardening Is Intensive:
The main reason for intensive market gardening is the production pressure on the land. Intensive market gardening breaks all the traditional crop production rules. Also, it can provide two to three times more crops than the conventional farming method. Now, I’ll tell you why market gardening is considered intensive farming.
1. Cultivating In Small Land:
In intensive farming, the cultivator uses only a few acres of land for production. Though this method saves land areas, it creates pressure by growing a tremendous amount of food products. For this reason, anyone can provide harvest to the public without using a large amount of land property.
2. Huge Production Rate:
The production rate5 is so high and intensive. You can cultivate a lot of crops on one-acre land. Besides, intensive farming allows various crops on a single acre of land. So, the farmer can use the ground in a versatile way. However, in this process, the cultivator can grow the same type of crops.
3. Large Investment:
Intensive market gardening requires a significant investment and labor. A farmer who wants to cultivate crops commercially through intensive farming needs considerable investment and work. It is because commercial farming must be extensive and high in production rate.
4. Using Modern Technology:
For cultivating through intensive farming, the farmer must use modern technologies. This technology contains chemical fertilizer, pesticide, irrigation, etc. Also, modern technology can save plants from spoiling. Using modern techniques increases production a lot.
5. Multi-Crop Production:
Multi-crop production is the most powerful feature of intensive market gardening. Through this method, anyone can grow various crops together. However, this process only allows the same seasonal crops. Also, the product must be the same in taking nutrients.
6. High Food Value:
Intensive farming crops get a high food value in the market. In hybrid crops, scientists try to keep various nutrients in a single type. For this reason, a hybrid crop can contain multiple vitamins. And these factors grow the food and market value of the intensive crops.
Difference Between Intensive Vs. Extensive Gardening:
There are some significant differences between intensive and extensive gardening. Though the purpose of both methods is the same, the cultivating process differs. Also, sometimes, the farmer needs to choose the way according to the situation and elements. Now, look at the table below to understand the differences between these two market gardening methods.
|Intensive Market Gardening
|Extensive Market Gardening
|Growing vast production with less land and modern technology.
|Cultivating vast or less production with large land areas and traditional methods.
|Suitable for small land areas.
|Suitable for large land areas.
|The overpopulated area near the city market.
|Less populated area and far away from the city market.
|Need a large number of laborers.
|Can be cultivated with a small amount of labor.
|High investment and effort.
|Less investment and effort.
|40% or more of retail investment.
|Less than 40% of retail investment.
|Provides a high production rate.
|Provides less production rate.
|Contains environmental effects.
|No harmful environmental effects.
|Highly beneficial from all sides.
|Less beneficial from all sides.
|Greenhouse, Hatchery, Mixed crops.
|Nomadic herding, Renching.
Is Market Gardening Lucrative?
Market gardening is a lucrative and highly profitable business. As this farming method can increase the production rate, anyone can get the highest profit through proper cultivation. Also, through intensive market gardening, the cultivator can earn at least $50000 to $100000 annually per acre.
Besides, most farmers get 10 to 20 percent of retail investors during the early harvesting. So, it is evident that market gardening is a lucrative farming process for farmers.
Is Market Gardening Commercial Or Subsistence?
Market gardening is a commercial process for producing more harvest to supply in city markets. Generally, the only aim of market gardening is to fulfill the food demands by growing many crops in a small area. And this aim makes the process a commercial production.
To cultivate crops through market gardening, the farmer must invest a large amount of money and labor. After the harvest, these crops are used as the food demands for the large population. City markets and restaurant7 owners are the main customers of these crops.
What Are The Advantages Of Intensive Gardening?
Producing a large number of food products on a small land is the main advantage of intensive gardening. Also, a farmer can produce mixed crops together. It allows one to grow different crops one at a time. Besides, through intensive gardening, one can earn a considerable amount annually.
Moreover, market gardening includes the opportunity to experiment with crops for a higher harvesting rate. The same thing is also true for the meat-producing process. Lastly, intensive gardening can participate in fulfilling the public food demand.
Where Can You Practice Market Gardening?
You can practice market gardening in the nearby areas from the city market. If you’re planning to start intensive market gardening, choose the outside areas near the city. Also, the home yards or roof-tops can be another option for cultivating intensive market gardening.
Besides, choose the outlying areas from the city for extensive market gardening. Extensive projects need more land and care to produce the harvest.
Is market gardening intensive or extensive is the standard query of most newbie farmers. Though market gardening can be both intensive and extensive, scientists consider it intensive because of the cultivation method and elements. Intensive market gardening can be the best option to fulfill urban food demands.
Besides, intensive farming can rescue a polluted area by producing food for people and earning money. So, if you can invest a large amount of labor and capital, apply this process in the home yards or roof-top.
- The history of market gardening. (n.d.). Alimentarium. https://www.alimentarium.org/en/knowledge/history-market-gardening#:~:text=The%20industrial%20revolution,today%E2%80%99s%20community%20allotments.
- Sentient Media. (2020, May 15). Intensive Agriculture: Impact on Humans, Animals, and the Planet. Sentient Media. https://sentientmedia.org/intensive-agriculture/#:~:text=Intensive%20and%20extensive%20agriculture%20stands,it%20comes%20to%20animal%20operations.
- Greenhouse gas reduction. (n.d.). IAEA. https://www.iaea.org/topics/greenhouse-gas-reduction#:~:text=Agriculture%20is%20both,of%20natural%20resources.
- Stray dog institute. (n.d.). Intensive Agriculture’s Impact on the Common Good. Stray dog institute. https://straydoginstitute.org/intensive-agriculture/#:~:text=Intensive%20agriculture%20relies,ingredients.%5B1%5D
- Schubert, C. (2015, August 24). WHY MIXED CROP AND LIVESTOCK FARMING SYSTEMS ARE CENTRAL FOR FUTURE AGRICULTURE DEVELOPMENT. Climate change, Agriculture and Food security. https://ccafs.cgiar.org/news/why-mixed-crop-and-livestock-farming-systems-are-central-future-agriculture-development#:~:text=There%20are%20many,to%20climate%20change.
- Arizton Advisory and Intelligence. (n.d.). Garden Tiller Market to Reach $1.7 Billion by 2027. Market Driven by Rising Adoption of Urban Gardening and Growth of Sustainable Cities – Arizton. Globe News Wire. https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2022/08/30/2507200/0/en/Garden-Tiller-Market-to-Reach-1-7-Billion-by-2027-Market-Driven-by-Rising-Adoption-of-Urban-Gardening-and-Growth-of-Sustainable-Cities-Arizton.html#:~:text=The%20garden%20tillers,opportunit