The Olmec likely grew crops such as maize, beans, squash, manioc, sweet potatoes, and cotton.
What are the main products of Olmec agriculture?
Agriculture was the basis of the major Mesoamerican civilizations such as the Olmecs, Mayas and Aztecs, with the principal crops being corn, beans, squash, chili peppers and tomatoes. The tradition of planting corn, beans and squash together allows the beans to replace the nitrogen that corn depletes from the soil.
Maize was their staple food, and since it was such an important crop to them, the Olmec even started believing in a Maize god. Civilization began in coastal lowlands, and by the early 1500s BC, the Olmec already started planting many crops in the rich soil along the banks of the area’s river.
The Olmecs and the Mayas. The peoples of the Americas experienced their own Neolithic Revolution in which they learned to grow corn (maize) and other crops.
Archeological evidence indicates Mexico’s ancient Mayan, Aztec and Olmec civilizations depended on maize as the basis of their diet and was their most revered crop. … Maize was the staple food in ancient Mesoamerica and fed both nobles and commoners. 5
Olmec Food, Crops, and Diet They planted many of the same crops seen in the region today, such as squash, beans, manioc, sweet potatoes, and tomatoes. Maize was a staple of the Olmec diet, although it is possible that it was introduced late in the development of their culture.
The Olmecs lived in hot, humid lowlands along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico in what is now southern Veracruz and Tabasco states in southern Mexico. The first evidence of their remarkable art style appears about 1200 bce in San Lorenzo, their oldest known building site.
The Olmec created massive monuments, including colossal stone heads, thrones, stela (upright slabs), and statues. They may have been the originators of the Mesoamerican ball game, a ceremonial team sport played throughout the region for centuries.
The Olmec culture flourished in several civic and ceremonial centers along the Gulf of Mexico more than 3,000 years ago, from 1500 to 400 B.C. Best known for their carvings of colossal stone heads, the Olmec were masters of monumental sculpture, and also produced an array of other distinctive artworks in stone, ceramic
The Olmec were American Indians, not Negroes (as Melgar had thought) or Nordic supermen.”
What invention might have increased crop production? The plow could have helped with the size of the crops and a wheeled vehicle could have helped with the transportation of food. How did the Mayas carry food to the cities? They carried food to the cities by manpower.
Olmec farmers grew maize, beans, chilies, tomatoes, and squashes. They kept dogs and chickens for meat. As well as that the Olmecs hunted deer and peccaries (wild pigs). The Olmecs also fished and collected shellfish.
Maya farmers harnessed rainwater through irrigation channels and used the slash-and-burn technique to clear the dense jungle. They were able to have multiple planting locations and soil erosion by cycling through their various fields to access the most fertile soil for each harvest season.
In South America, agriculture began as early as 9000 BCE, starting with the cultivation of several species of plants that later became only minor crops. In the Andes of South America, the potato was domesticated between 8000 BC and 5000 BC, along with beans, tomatoes, peanuts, coca, llamas, alpacas, and guinea pigs.