A question of broad economic and social significance is the extent to which farming in prehistoric times, and perhaps even in historical times, was characterised by cultivation on a small scale and with intensive methods. Archaeobotanically, a distinction may be possible between intensive and extensive cultivation on the basis of the weed seeds associated with ancient grain samples. To this end, an ecological study was carried out in central Ewia of the weeds of winter-sown pulses grown both intensively in gardens and extensively in fields. The recorded weed flora was demonstrably influenced by relevant husbandry variables, such as method of tillage (with hoe or plough), weeding, manuring and soil organic content. The closest correspondence, however, was with the size, type and location of cultivated plots, suggesting that the weed flora was determined by a combination of these husbandry variables. In conclusion, the potential is briefly discussed of disentangling these variables for application in an archacobotanical context.