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Difference Between Agriculture and Horticulture

agricultureAgriculture vs Horticulture

Although horticulture is generally classified as a subdivision of agriculture which deals with plant gardening, it is actually different from agriculture. It is easy to relate the two because some of the techniques employed are used interchangeably in both sciences, for instance in the cultivation of crops which is an agricultural process, many horticulture methods are employed. Horticulture is a complete science of its own as well as a full industry.

Horticulture is defined in the strict sense as the science that employs special techniques and methods to cultivate plants, including methods used to properly condition the soil for seed planting or planting tubers. The domain of horticulture includes cultivation, plant propagation, breeding of plants, production of crops, plant physiology as well as biochemistry and genetic engineering. The plants looked at are mainly vegetables, trees, flowers, turf, shrubs, fruits and nuts. Horticulturalists carry out extensive research in their domain in order to get better quality crop yields, improve their nutritional value to humans, make crops pest and disease resistant and adjust to environmental stresses. The most notable difference from agriculture is that horticulture deals with small scale gardening and usually in enclosed gardens although this is not a necessity while agriculture is done on large scale with extensive crop cultivation.

Agriculture is the science of growing food crops and rearing animals for farming. It involves the whole web of processes employed in the redirection of the natural flow of the food chain and the rechanneling of energy. The natural food web starts with the sun providing sunlight to plants which is then converted to sugars which are processed into plant food in a process called photosynthesis. Herbivores animals will eat plants as their food and the carnivores animals will eat the herbivores for food. Dead animals and plants will be decomposed by bacteria and return to the soil as plant nutrients and the whole chain repeats afresh. Agriculture actually rearranges this web so that plants are protected for human consumption although plants can be grown specifically for animal (herbivores) consumption like cattle, which is in turn reared for human consumption. Agriculture can be divided into two categories, which are conventional and sustainable agriculture. Conventional agriculture deals with modifying some environmental factors like trees, soil tilling, and irrigation and all activities that favor single crop growing especially for crops like wheat, rice and corn. Sustainable agriculture is where ecological principles are employed in the farming. It is also known as agro-ecology. It aims at sustainable farming practices. It involves planting of a variety of crops together so the farming garden will never be bare at any time.


1. Horticulture strictly involves plant cultivation only while agriculture deals with cultivation of crops as well as animal farming.

2. Horticulture may include plants that are not for human consumption while agriculture mainly focuses on crops for human consumption.

3. Horticulture is done on smaller, enclosed plots while agriculture is done on extensive pieces of land on large scale.

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  1. So if i have certificates on horticulture,i can be able to study agriculture.

  2. Your article would have more credibility if you didn’t keep overusing, and misusing, the word “science.” There may be some science involved, but for the most part neither horticulture nor agriculture are sciences.

    • I am really curious about the main idea that makes you believe that Agriculture and Horticulture are not science. I think you have confused farming with Holticulture. There are several Universities all over the world, as well as many Institutions , doing very serious research in Agriculture. I have an Msc on Horticulture and have already published papers in international scientific conferences and journals. Farming could have never fed the planet without the publication of the research results in Agriculture. In what way does that sound non-scientific to you?

      • PS: And for the record, using the word credibility instantly implies the usuge of proper citation in an article. There is no other way you or anyone could know about credibility. Scientifically speaking.

      • Hello,
        I am doing Bsc Horticulture and I
        Need a guide who is my master in my department for future acquirance of knowledge….!Can you please guide me for my career Sir…!!!

        • Hello kaviraj..please can u share your info and experience in horticulture?? My son is planing to do career in that…Thank you

  3. Today I went to your web page,Horticulture. Really it is very interesting. I like it very much.

  4. Well explained. Thank you

  5. so which is more gud???should i take agriculture or horticulture????or floriculture?
    and plz help me..i wanna take biotechnology n do research on dna..but itseems like there are no jobs in hyderabad.o do anyone knows r dey really no jobs?????????

  6. what a different between horticure and horticulter

  7. Thank you for the article on Agriculture vs. Horticulture. I found it very informative.

  8. Thanks a lot for taking your time to do this piece. It was informative and helpful.

  9. I went through the dates I would like to do a diploma course in horticulture, please help me with more details, Thanks

  10. Which is the good between them

  11. Thanks for giving a lot of knowledge to me because my school book is lost before some days and tomorrow is my exam and in this area where I live there is no one my friend and no one is giving me copy before some days to copy it and now I will write in my own words in the exam.Thanks!Very much

  12. I found it very informative

  13. Its very clearly explain and easy to understand and easy to transfer by lecture thank you.

  14. Thanks it is quite helpful

  15. Rubber plantation comes under which category of farming? Agri or horti

  16. What are the commodities that go under agriculture and what under horticulture

  17. My son is interested in B.Sc. Agricultture. In his college bottth B.Sc Agriculture and B.Sc. Horticulture are courses are offered. Please help him to select which one is the best for his future


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