Agricultural Science

Definitions and Meanings of Agricutural Terms (I - O)

len Alfred Ajibola - Tue, 14th May, 2019 @ 3:53 AM

Topics in Agricultural Science

Soil formation in agricuture Economic empowerment through agricuture Management as a factor of production in agriculture Labor as a factor of production in agriculture Finance as a factor of production in agriculture Water as a factor of production in agriculture Land as a factor of production in agriculture Len Academy Agricultural Science midterm questions for JSS1, 2nd term Len Academy Agricultural Science midterm questions for jss2, 2nd term Clay soil explained with its types and characteristics Loamy soil explained with its characteristics Sandy soil: Characteristics of sandy soil and ways to make it fertile Soil explained with its composition Types of agricultural practices Crop rotation explained Benefits of crop rotation Differences between subsistence and commercial farming Subsistence farming explained with its characteristics What is commercial farming? Types of commercial farming Characteristics of commercial farming

Academic Questions in Agricultural Science

Please click here to see all Questions and Answers

The ideal pH for the optimum growth of most agricultural crop is between _____.

  • A. 1 – 3.5

  • B. 4 – 5.5

  • C. 6 – 7.5

  • D. 8 – 9.5

  • E. 10 – 11.5

  • F. 12 – 13.5

People who go about their lives by raising and herding livestock such as cattle, sheep and goats are said to practice _____.

  • A. Pastoralism

  • B. Pasturalism

  • C. Herding

  • D. Herdsmen

  • E. Animalism

  • F. Anime Farming

The act of giving birth in pigs is called _____.

  • A. Calving

  • B. Piggery

  • C. Kidding

  • D. Farrowing

  • E. Calfing

  • F. Pigging

Which of the following is not a vegetable?

  • A. Cashew

  • B. Cocumber

  • C. Tomatoes

  • D. Carrot

  • E. Squash

  • F. Eggplant

All plants are crops.

  • A. True

  • B. False

In agriculture, macronutrients are essential nutrients required by plants. Which of the following is not a macronutrient?

  • A. Zinc

  • B. Sulphur

  • C. Calcium

  • D. Phosphorus

  • E. Potassium

  • F. Magnesium

Which of the following is false concerning micronutrients?

  • A. They are non-essential nutrients

  • B. They are required by plants in minute quantities

  • C. Iron is a micronutrient

  • D. Chlorine is a micronutrient

  • E. Copper is a micronutrient

  • F. Boron is a micronutrient

_____ is a term that describes the biological, chemical and cultural control tactics employed to make pest management economical, environmentally friendly and socially acceptable.

  • A. Integrated Pest Management

  • B. Integral Pest Management

  • C. International Pest Management

  • D. Inclusive Pest Management

  • E. Imbibed Pest Management

  • F. Inclusion Pest Management

Agricultural Terms:

As students, understanding the various agricultural terms and their meanings can be crucial towards gaining a better knowledge on this subject.

In this article, we will look at the meanings of agricultural terms for the letters 'I' through 'O'.

  • Incubation

This is the process of keeping eggs under controlled conditions of temperature and moisture in order to make them hatch.

It takes the eggs of a turkey 28 days to hatch. However, a chick hatch from the egg on day 21.


  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

IPM involves the use of biological, chemical, and cultural control tactics to make pest management economical, environmentally friendly, and socially acceptable.

Please read on pest of agricutural importance here.

The goal of IPM is to minimize the excessive use of chemicals in controlling pest on agricultural land.

You can read on agricultural land here.


  • Integration

This a a process of ensuring control on all or some of the various stages of production within a specific organization.

Please read on production here.


  • Identity Preserved (IP)

This is the identification and maintenance of seeds with specific traits or characteristics because of their competitive advantage.


  • Lactation Period

This is the duration of time a female animal gives milk to its offspring.

The term 'lactation period' is usually associated to dairy cows and milk goats.

Please read on agricultural terms and meanings (letter A).


  • Layer

This is a female chicken that produces eggs regularly.

A layer should produce at least 19 dozens of eggs in a year.


  • Leaching

This is a process of removal or loss of soluble soil materials or nutrients by the passage of water through soil.

Dissolved soil nutrients are completely lost in leaching.

Please read on soil erosion here.


  • Legumes

This is a type of plant that has nodules formed by bacteria on its roots. The bacteria that produce these nodules take nitrogen from the air and pass it through to the plant for its use.

Understand that leguminous plants are important in crop rotation. They include beans, soybeans and sweet clover.


  • Litter

This are offsprings born at the same time by one sow. Understand that the 'offsprings' that encomprises a litter are always more than one.

A sow is an adult female pig.


  • Livestock

This is an animal domesticated for meat, money or other market purposes. Examples of livestock include beef and dairy cattle, sheep, goats and chickens.


  • Macronutrients

These are essential nutrients or elements needed by plants in relatively large amount. They include:

  • N (Nitrogen)

  • P (Phosphorus)

  • K (Potassium)

  • Mg (Magnesium)

  • Ca (Calcium)

  • S (Sulphur)

Please read more on macronutrients here.


  • Manure

They are generally animal excreta and straw. They also include refuse from stables.


  • Mare

This is an adult or mature female horse.


  • Marginal Land

This is a land that is unproductive for farming.


  • Mastitis

This is a disease of the cow’s udder as a result of infections from pathogens. This infection may result from improper milking procedures.

You can read on immunization here.


  • Micronutrient

A micronutrient is considered to be an essential or important nutrient (elements) needed by plants in minute or small quantities. The micronutrients are:

  • Mn (Manganese)

  • Zn (Zinc)

  • Cl (Chlorine)

  • Fe (Iron)

  • Mo (Molybdenum)

  • Ni (Nickel)

  • B (Boron)

  • Cu (Copper)

Please read more on micronutrients here.


  • Milk (Average Composition)

The average composition of milk is:

  • Water --> 87.1%

  • Lactose --> 5.1%

  • Fat --> 3.9%

  • Casein --> 2.5%

  • Albumin --> 0.7%

  • Mineral matter --> 0.7%

Lactose is a disaccharide comprising of two simple sugar molecules. These are: glucose and galactose respectively.

Please read more on carbohydrates and sugars here.


  • Nematode

These are soil worms that are not segmented and are also very small in size.

Nematodes may attack the root of plants, causing damage to it.


  • Nitrification

This is the oxidation of ammonia (NH3) or ammonium (NH4+) into nitrites and the the subsequent oxidation of nitrites into nitrates.


  • Nitrification Inhibitors

These are chemical compounds added to nitrogen fertilizer in order to reduce the rate of conversion of ammonium (present in the fertilizer) into a nitrates. In simple terms, nitrification inhibitors reduces the rate at which 'nitrification' occurs.


  • Nitrogen Cycle

This is the cyclic movement or transformation of nitrogen from the atmosphere into the soil where it is used by plants and other nitrifying organisms until it is eventually returned back to the atmosphere.

Leguminous plants are very useful in fixing nitrogen back into the soil. For this reason, they are highly recommended in a crop rotation planting system.


  • Nitrogen Fixation

This is the process through which atmospheric nitrogen is combined with other elements to form inorganic compounds which can then be converted (by a process called nitrification) into nutrients that can easily be absorbed by plants, to be utilize for their normal functioning including photosynthesis.

Please read on photosynthesis here.

Note: Rhizobium, a bacteria found in the root nodules of leguminous plants brings about the nitrification process.


  • Nodules

They are small bodies or structures found on the surface of a plant's root and they usually contain rhizobium.

Rhizobium is a bacteria found in the root nodules of leguminous plants. An example of a leguminous plant is soya bean.


  • Non-selective Herbicides

These are chemical compounds that are generally used to kill plants. The fact that it generally causes the death of plants makes it a 'non-selective' herbicides.

Conversely, the term 'selective herbicides' refers to chemical compounds used to kill specific type of plants.

Meanwhile, recall that the term 'herbicides' applies to chemical compounds utilized in killing weeds or unwanted plants.

Please read on the differences between plants and a crops here.

Understand that some selective herbicides may become non-selective when used at very high rates.


  • Nutrient

This is a chemical material, element or compound that is needed or essential for the normal body metabolism, growth, reproduction and other basic characteristics of life.

Nutrients are present in the six classes of food. They are:

  1. Carbohydrates

  2. Fats and Oils

  3. Proteins

  4. Vitamins

  5. Minerals

  6. Water

Please read on the basic characteristics of life here.


  • Offspring

They are the progeny of parents. The term 'progeny' is another word for offspring.

Please read more on symnonyms.


  • Omnivore

These are living organisms that feed on flesh, animals and plant materials. Humans are examples of omnivores.


  • Organic Fertilizer

This is a fertilizer containing plant nutrients in combination with carbon.

It is noteworthy to state that an organic material will always have carbon in its composition.

Please read the concept of organic chemistry here.

You can read on agricultural terms and meanings (P and Q).

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Amazing facts in Agricultural Science

Cows technically have one stomach, not four. However, a cow's stomach has four compartments. These are: rumen, reticulum, omasum and abomasum

Peanuts are legumes and not nuts

Although plants neither see nor hear, they can recognize their siblings and even give them preferential treatments

Squirrels do plant more trees (through their actions) than an average human in their lifetime. They often hide their acorns and nuts underground and forget about them

Cows have got the ability to walk up stairs, but not down stairs

A group of cows is called a team, drove or herd.

People just prefer to call them herd

Notable points in Agricultural Science

Below are characteristics of gymnosperms:

  1. Their seeds have cones that protect them.

  2. Sepals and petals aren't present in their cones.

  3. Stigma and style are absent.

  4. They do not produce fruits. Only seeds are formed.

  5. Companion cells are absent.

  6. Sporophyll form the cones.

  7. Anther and filament are absent.

  8. The ovules are not present in the ovary.

  9. Gymnosperms do not possess flowers.

  10. Please read on the anatomical differences between gymnosperms and angiosperms here

The flower is the reproductive organ in plants' sexual reproduction. In order to achieve a successful sexual propagation or reproduction in plants, the floral parts of the flower are utilized.

The floral parts of a flower consists of the followings:

  1. Sepals

  2. Petals

  3. Stamen

  4. Carpel

The stamen is male portion of a plant. It consists of the anther and filament.

The carpel (or pistil) is the female portion of the plant. It consists of the stigma, style and ovary.

Please read more on plants' sexual reproduction here

An organism will be considered a pest if it does one of the followings:

  • Attack crops and eat its seeds, roots, stem, leaves and flowers. Examples are locust and grasshoppers.

  • Cause damage to stored food, fruits or other agricultural produce. Some may even urinate or deaficate on these products. Examples are rodents, cockroaches and mice.

  • Attack and kill farm animals like goats, sheep and cattle. Examples are foxes, wild cats and snakes.

  • Act as disease vectors. A vector is an organism that carries parasite and other disease causing organisms, without being affected; but when they introduce the parasites into their host, such host becomes infected with disease. Examples of vectors are rodents and mosquitoes.

    Please read more on vectors of diseases here.

Below are the classification of crops based on their uses:

  • Oil crops

  • Vegetable crops

  • Latex crops

  • Drug and Medicinal crops

  • Beverage crops

  • Fibre crops

  • Fruit crops

  • Root and Tubers

  • Legumes

  • Spices

  • Cereals

All crops are plants but not all plants are crops. Below are some instances:

  • Weeds are considered as plants, not crops.

  • Parasitic plants are not necessarily crops. Examples of parasitic plants include mistletoe, corpse flower and striga.

  • Carnivorous or insectivorous plants are not necessarily crops. Examples are sundew, venus flytrap and pitcher plant. The image below shows a carnivorous plant (venus flytrap).

Venus flytrap - Len Academy


Meanwhile, always understand that all crops are plants, and they are grown for food, money or something beneficial.

Please read on plants versus crops here