Agriculture: Nearly 20 per cent of the total area of the United States is cultivated. The plains of the north central states and the southern coast are the most important farming sections of the country. On the whole, soil, temperature, and rainfall conditions are favourable here for agriculture.
Agriculture is largely mechanized and highly productive. The American farmers use modern methods of agriculture. They use a variety of automatic farming machines and chemical fertilizers and practice crop rotation. They use better seeds and insecticides, etc. Today, only 5 percent of the Americans are involved in farming activities. Each farmer feeds not only his own family but also produces enough food for 30 more people. Farming has developed in a number of belts or regions in each of which a particular crop predominates.
Maize or corn is the most important cereal crop in the United States. The production of maize is chiefly concentrated in the corn belt where two-thirds of country’s maize is grown. The farming area which stretches from Ohio westward across Indiana, lllinois and lowa to central Nebraska is known as the corn belt. Much of the maize raised in this region is fed to cattle and pigs. The United Statess accounts for about 40 per cent of the world’s total maize production.
Wheat rankis second among the important cereals of the country. The United States is one the leading wheat peoducing and exporting countries of the world. Two main types of wheat, namely spring wheat and winter wheat are grown in the country. The spring wheat belt of North and South Dakota is a continuation of the Canadian prairies. The winter wheat belt lies south of the spring wheat belt, in Kansas and parts of Oklahoma and Nebraska. In fact, Kansas produces more wheat than any other state in the country. Besides wheat, farmers now grow barley, oats, sugar-beet, potatoes and flax in the spring wheat belt.
Cotton is grown mainly in the south. The cotton belt extends south of the corn belt where the climate and soil are ideally suited to cotton. The United States is one of the major cotton producing countries of the world.
The United States also produces more tobacco than any other country in the world. Kentucky, Soy beans and fruits such as apples, grapes, peaches, oranges, etc.
Animal Rearing : Great herds of cattle are reared for beef on the drier western parts of the plains. Large cattle farms have been established here. These are called ranches . Are sent to the Corn Belt for fattening and ultimately they are slaughtered and converted into various beef products.