Because of relatively favourable natural local conditions and the prevailing farm size, agriculture is a key feature of the Demmin region. The area has a high percentage of enterprises cultivating between 200 and over 1,000 ha of cropland. The average farm size was 313 ha in 2007, which is significantly higher than the Mecklenburg-Western Pomeranian average of 216 ha (Statistisches Landesamt Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, 2007).
Today the area is primarily used as farmland. The lowland moors serve as grasslands, although some have been rewatered in measures to restore wetland functions. The forests are primarily limited to the moraine landscapes. Gley soils are common in the study area between the dryer soils of the Pleistocene plains and the marshy lowlands (Albrecht, 1991).
The fertile soils and low relief of the clay plains led to intensive agricultural use. The result was the removal of small landscape elements and a flattening of the terrain.
Large parts of the DEMMIN test site have a soil quality index above 41. The Demmin network farms some 30,000 ha in the area under study. The average size of fields under cultivation in Demmin County is 54.32 ha, although some of them are over 200 ha.
The diagram provides an overview of the crops under cultivation by the DEMMIN Network. The most common grains planted at the test site are winter wheat, barley rye and rape, comprising about 62% of the fields. Maize and root crops account for another 18%. Meadows and grasslands supply fodder (Borg et al., 2009; Zabel, 2008).
Due to high local variability at the DEMMIN test site, the effects of spatial and temporal variations within relatively small areas have to be taken into account on the larger fields (over 100 ha), which means that sub-parcel cultivation is required.
The DEMMIN test site is relatively low in forest cover. At only about 14 %, it can be regarded as an additional positive factor in assessing the suitability of this landscape for agriculture.
Albrecht, G. (1991): Exkursionsführer Mecklenburg-Vorpommern - Zehn geographische Exkursionen durch typische Landschaften eines neuen Bundeslandes (1. Auflage).- Verlag Höller und Zwick, Braunschweig.- S. 167.
Borg, E., Lippert, K., Zabel, E., Löpmeier, F.J., Fichtelmann, B., Jahncke, D., Maass, H. (2009): DEMMIN – Teststandort zur Kalibrierung und Validierung von Fernerkundungsmissionen.- In: 15 Jahre Studiengang Vermessungswesen – Geodätisches Fachforum und Festakt, Neubrandenburg.- S. 401 - 419
Statistisches Landesamt Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (2007): Statistischer Bericht C4935 2007 01, Tabelle 12. Landwirtschaftliche Betriebe 2003 und 2007 nach Hauptnutzungs- und Kulturarten.- S. 20 -21.
Zabel, E. (2008): mündliche Mitteilung