The agricultural revolution occurred in England from 1750 to 1900. Most farmers during this time changed the way they produced food.
The Enclosure Movement
England before the Industrial Revolution began an enclosure movement that revolutionized the landscape of rural England . Instead of communal exploitation of land, property would be managed privately. The community in a typical English farmer society was no longer in charge of land, and there was no longer a loose and lax policy on the occupation of land: open pastures and meadows were transformed into fenced, hedged, or walled borders. The name "enclosure" was derived from the fact that most land was now officially "enclosed" and no longer open.
The process of enclosure was most apparent in the 18th and 19th century, when numerous acts and bills were signed by the English parliament for separate and different parts of land. Eventually, enclosure became so popular that most of the country, except for a few remote areas in the Northwest, practiced enclosure. Enclosure, in revolutionizing pattern of landscape, revolutionized economic activity by isolating and organizing different farms.
People were actually charged to use different "segments" of land. The farmers of England were not happy with the system, but it helped boost England 's economy, a necessary factor for the growth of any industry.
The Norfolk Crop Rotation
Before the agricultural revolution, farmers had strips of land that they grew their food on redundantly, draining a specific portion of land and all of its nutrients eventually. For the nutrients to return, farmers often left strips of land empty or fallow for up to five years.
A new system, however, was developed around the 19th century, known as the Norfolk Crop Rotation. Under this system, an area of land was split into different sections, and each section would always be planted, but the different plants per section would be rotated. Some years, plants that did not require many nutrients, while others didn't.
Because of the increase in population and the new system of forming numerous strips of land, much more planting had to be done. Since there was a limited number of farmers, machines had to be made. This situation led to the main enhancers of the Industrial Revolution, such as the seed drill.
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Norfolk Four - Course Rotation. Encarta. 26 Dec 2005 .