Two recent articles published in the journal Vegetation History & Archaeobotany, which caught my attention as an Associate Editor, explore early cultivation in Argentina and Czech Republic:
The paper by Lopez (2017) and Dreslerová et al. (2017) both explore archaeological sites and evidence for cultivation at these sites. In the Argentinian study occupation at the sites began around 7,400 years ago, with the oldest abundant archaeobotanical remains appearing around 3,000 years ago. These archaeobotanical remains suggest that plant cultivation was adopted not adopted until c. 1,500 years ago. In contrast the evidence of cultivation in the Chech Reublic study show that cultivation began c. 7,500 years ago with the arrival new peoples bringing technology and ideas into the region. The spread and development of agricultural practices and the cultivation of crops around the world is, of course, complex (e.g. Diamond, 2002) the evidence from these types of studies in very different parts of the world provide key insights into this process that allow us to gradually piece together how people have expanded their modification of ecosystems.