It is becoming increasingly clear that the agricultural sector will have to find an additional raison d'être beyond the production of food alone. One of the new services that agriculture can provide is contributing to the environmental quality of rural areas. In this respect a great burden of expectation is placed on organic farming. Here we examine how organic farming can contribute to the quality of specific regional landscapes. We do this with the help of a new instrument, the phenology of the landscape, which measures the contributions made by organic and conventional farming to the succession of colours and shapes during the seasons. This seasonal development plays an important role in people's appreciation of the landscape. The study shows that seasonal development is more recognizable on organic farms than on conventional farms, and that seasonal development is a scientifically-usable criterion for evaluating the environmental quality of farms.
- physiographic features
- organic farming