Row Crop Producer/Farmer

A row crop producer or farmer plants and harvests traditional row crops — such as corn, soybeans, wheat, cotton, potatoes, canola, sunflowers, flax, sugar beets, field peas, etc. — independently or for a large farm or company. Row crop producers or farmers will maintain equipment, facilities and farmland as needed. Additionally, they will assist in record keeping on the operation to ease bookkeeping and regulatory compliance tracking.

What Responsibilities Will I Have?

  • Purchase seed from an area dealer or company prior to beginning planting seasons
  • Perform tillage tasks in spring and fall seasons to prepare land for planting
  • Operate farm equipment, such as tractors, sprayers, loaders, discs, cultivators, planters, grain carts and harvesters
  • Maintain and clean farm equipment as needed
  • Scout and inspect crops for the need of pesticides, fungicides or herbicides and spray as needed
  • Manage fertility levels and treat with appropriate product
  • Harvest crops once ready
  • Perform routine and minor maintenance on equipment
  • Prepare equipment for busy seasons
  • Manage and monitor production and harvest inventory
  • Manage bills and paperwork and maintain accurate records, especially if in a business or leadership role
  • Prepare harvest for sale and transport harvest to appropriate sellers
  • Navigate the fields with tractor-drawn implements such as wagons, chisel plows, discs, soil conditioners, land-levelers and spreaders

Recommended High School Courses:

  • agricultural education
  • agricultural mechanics
  • plant science
  • horticulture science
  • biology
  • business
  • mathematics

Education/Training Required:

A high school diploma is required to be a row crop farmer, but an associate or bachelor’s degree in a relevant field such as agribusiness, plant science or agriculture would be helpful. Certifications, such as a CDL or pesticide applicator licenses, are also often desired and will increase employability.

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