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Agricultural and forestry biodiversity:

Cultivated crops

Cultivated crops, including annual crops, orchards and plantations, are usually monocultures in that only one plant species is cultivated. However, there are many species in such so-called monocultures including weeds and their associated organisms that compete with the crop species for resources, pollinators, crop pests (insects, mites, nematode worms, birds, plant pathogens, etc), predators and parasites that attack the pests, and other organisms not directly associated with the crop that are able to exist in this disturbed system (e.g. ground dwelling species such as carabid beetles and springtails).

The main types of cultivated crops, pastures and plantations in southern Africa




Wheat, barley and rye



Pulses (edible legumes)



Oil seed crops



Herbs and spices












Fibre crops



Crops for drugs, natural medicines, additives and supplements






Fruit orchards





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