[Tagging] Is crop=yes tag completely and utterly useless?

Warin 61sundowner at gmail.com
Sun Aug 18 23:08:20 UTC 2019

On 18/08/19 22:10, Paul Allen wrote:
> On Sun, 18 Aug 2019 at 07:40, Joseph Eisenberg 
> <joseph.eisenberg at gmail.com <mailto:joseph.eisenberg at gmail.com>> wrote:
>     But I see that there is some desire for a tag for generic cropland, or
>     farmland used to grow unspecified crops. For this I would suggest the
>     key "farmland=cropland" or "crop=field_cropland", rather than crop=yes
>     (less specific) or produce=crop (unclear).
> Before we get to the details of how we're going to tag it, we need to 
> be clear on what
> "it" is.
> Modern agricultural techniques (mainly the use of fertilizers, whether 
> natural or
> artificial) permit monoculture, where a single type of crop is grown 
> in the same
> field, year after year.  This we can map with crop=* (or crop=yes or 
> whatever
> replaces it when we know a monoculture crop is grown but we don't know
> what it is, although that seems unlikely).
> However, it is still fairly common to use crop rotation where 
> different crops are grown
> in different years, or even two different crops in the same year.
> See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crop_rotation One crop in the 
> rotation may be
> grass, harvested for silage to later be fed to animals. In some cases 
> a field
> in a crop rotation may be used as pasture for a year to directly feed 
> animals.
> Land in crop rotation may be left fallow for a year, with no crop.  OTOH,
> where the land is very uneven then it might be used for nothing but 
> pasture
> (sheep or goats are the usual "crop" on land like that).

Sheep. goats, cattle, kangaroos or camels are not 'crops' but 'produce'.

> Maybe we need crop=rotation rather than crop=yes.  I suspect we need 
> both.  Not
> necessarily as the tag crop=yes if everyone thinks there's a better 
> tag, but we need to
> cover "this is used to grow crops in some sort of rotation" and "this 
> is used to grow
> crops but I can't figure out what type from this distance and I don't 
> know if it's
> monoculture or rotation."

And where part of that rotation includes animals the tag should be 
Possibly the mapper will not know if the rotation is only plants.

> Or maybe we should restrict ourself to mapping it as farmland because, 
> in general,
> we don't know what a farmer is going to do with a given field from 
> year to year.  There
> are specific cases where we're fairly sure a field is used for 
> monoculture and we
> have specific tags for those: orchard, vineyard, etc. But, in general, 
> just because I
> see oilseed rape in a field this year that doesn't mean it's going to 
> be oilseed
> rape next year (it usually isn't, around here).

In some parts only cattle are run, in other parts sheep, in other parts 
plants, and in some parts a combination.
Where that is this single use it is easy to tag e.g. produce=cattle, 
where there is variation from time to time then it gets complicated.

> I should also point out that many farms around here devote some or all 
> of their land
> to tourism.  Is that crop=tourist?  Where the tourists pitch their 
> tents or park their
> caravans is a camp site, but some of the farmland may be left for 
> tourists to
> use recreationally (aka the farmer having given up on farming completely
> because it's no longer economic).

If it has totally gone from farm use then it needs to be re-tagged. '
Occasional use I don't think should be tagged.
Regular use can be tagged using the conditional attribute.

A problem maybe seen with 'fallow'. While this seems to be 'weeds' to 
the casual observer, growing weeds by a farm will be seen as destructive 
to their other activities and any weeds will be discouraged. Usually 
'fallow' land will be planted out with some cheap coverage that can be 
usefully turned back it to the soils. So 'fallow' to me is a 'produce' 
of 'fertiliser' that does not leave the paddock.
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