Chapters :
  • NATURAL VEGETATION
  • TIMBER
  • ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
  • AGRICULTURE IN THE GULF STATES
  • COTTON
  • TOBACCO
  • CROP IN SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE

Precipitation – 05

NATURAL VEGETATION

Supports a luxuriant vegetation.

The lowlands carry both evergreen broad-leaved forests and deciduous trees [hardwood].

On the highlands, are various species of conifers such as pines and cypresses which are important softwoods.

Perennial plant growth is not checked by either a dry season or a cold season.

TIMBER

The forests of China and southern Japan also have considerable economic value and Include Oak, Camphor, etc..

South-eastern Brazil, eastern Paraguay, north-eastern Argentina have Parana pine, and the quebracho (axe-breaker, an extremely hard wood used for tanning).

Eastern Australia have Eucalyptus forests.

In Natal palm trees thrive.

The Gulf states of U.S.A. have lowland deciduous forests.

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

Region

A third of the world’s rice is grown in China, though the huge population leaves very little for export.

Monsoon China has all the ideal conditions for padi cultivation; a warm climate, moderately wet throughout the year, and extensive lowlands with fertile moisture-retentive alluvial soil, which if necessary, can be easily irrigated.

As the flat lands are insufficient for rice cultivation, farmers move up the hill-slopes and grow padi on terraced uplands.

AGRICULTURE IN THE GULF STATES

Lack of population pressure and the urge to export gave rise to corn, cotton and tobacco. And Corn

The humid air, the sunny summer and the heavy showers suit the crop well.

It is grown right from the Gulf coast to the Mid-west south of the Great Lakes, with the greatest concentration in the Corn Belt of Nebraska, Iowa, Indiana and Ohio.

The region accounts for more than half the World’s Production Of Corn, But Only 3 Per Cent Of The World’s Export.

This is because most of the corn is used for fattening animals, mostly cattle and pigs. [Thriving beef and pork industry]

The fattened animals are then sold to the meat plants in Chicago and Cincinnati to be processed into ‘corned beef’. [From here the beef is exported through Great Lakes and St Lawrence water way]

Apart from its ease of cultivation, corn’s most outstanding feature is its prolific yield.

It gives almost twice as much food (mainly starch) per acre as wheat or other cereals.

This explains why it is so widely cultivated in both the warm temperate and the tropical latitudes.

COTTON

Of the cash crops grown in the Gulf states, none is comparable with cotton.

The Gulf type of climate is undoubtedly the best for cotton growing.

Its long, hot growing season with 200 days frost free and a moderately high temperature permits the crop to grow slowly and mature within six months.

In the very south, in the Gulf-lands, the heavy rainfall damages the lint. This area is therefore less suitable for cotton and is devoted to citrus fruits, cane sugar and market gardening, as in Florida.

The commercial cultivation of cotton is now concentrated only in the most favorable areas which are the Mississippi flood plains and Atlantic coastlands.

The most dreaded enemy of the Cotton Belt is the boll-weevil. The pest multiplies rapidly. The pest is responsible for the westward migration of the Cotton Belt.

TOBACCO

Native crop of America.

Virginia tobacco is famous.

The humid atmosphere, the warmth and the well-drained soils of the Gulf states, enable tobacco to be successfully cultivated in many of the eastern states of U.S.A.

No less than half the tobacco that enters international trade comes from these states.

CROP IN SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE

In the coastlands of Natal, cane sugar is the dominant crop, followed by cotton and tobacco in the interior.

Maize is extensively cultivated for use both as food and animal fodder for cattle rearing.

In South America where rainfall is less than 120 cm, there is much grassland on which many cattle and sheep are kept for meat, wool and hides.The extensive natural pastures provide valuable forage for both cattle and sheep.Further north in southern Brazil, the rainfall increases to more than 120 cm and forest gradually replaces grass.

Here the important occupations are the cultivation of yerba mate (Paraguay tea) and the lumbering of araucaria or Parana pine. Cattle and sheep are reared, and maize and cane sugar are grown.

In Eastern Australia, Giant Eucalyptus trees rise one above the other right up the Eastern Highlands.

But with the influx of European immigrants, much of the forest has been cleared for settlement and dairying.

The eastern margin of New South Wales is now the chief source of Australia’s milk, butter and cheese, besides cotton, cane sugar and maize which are increasingly grown in the north.

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