This paper describes how political and economic transition has affected the system of agricultural production in Khorezm, Uzbekistan in terms of economic practices and relationships. Based on recent fieldwork, the paper argues that the local agricultural economy is a hybrid economy, where production for market, quasi-market and subsistence merge into and co-constitute one another. In order to keep the system going, and to make up for the uncertainties in the formal context of production, the relation between new private fermer and the peasant (dehkan) households is of particular importance. This relation resembles neo-patrimonial patron–client relations, which are both personal and informal while also being based on formal, contractual relations. The relations are asymmetric and based on the limited and unevenly distributed resources. The division of power is unequal but not fixed, due to the ongoing transition of the economic system.