Haiti Reconstruction

Rebuilding Haiti must start from the ground up, with agricultural education

Insecticides and weed control

One of the five ways to increase food production is to prevent what hinders food plants growth!

2 Hazards of gardens are plants that take nutrients and parasites like insects that eat the produce.

Insecticides

Chemical pesticides on crops are a recipe for long term disaster. Their use actually leads to increase losses due to killing of predators and development of resistance.

Biological and natural pesticides are much more selective, less disruptive, less persistent in the environment, and generally much less toxic to people.

Healthy plants growing in a fertile healthy soil getting adequate water are the best defense against diseases and insects.

We are trying to develope natural pesticide that can be made from plants found in Haiti.

We know that Bitter orange peels (Citrus aurantium common in Haiti) can extract d-limonene a natural insectide.

To make it put a bunch of citrus peelings in a container and cover them with water. Let them sit for a couple of days in the sun or a solar oven, then strain off the liquid and add a little dishsoap.

The strength of homemade orange oil varies significantly, so you will have to experiment: Apply during the cooler part of the day on small portions of plants to prevent burning foilage when using this recipe. Diluted solution acts as an insect control when applied to plant foliage using a pump sprayer.

TEPHROSIA VOGELII also can make a very powerful natural insectide that can be sprayed on gardens costs little more than labor.

Interesting article from Echo on this plant, its value in erosion control and insecticide

There are five methods to controlling garden weeds:

In Haiti the 2nd and 3rd are impractical!

  1. Biological is the most environmentally friendly method. This would call for implementing natural enemies of weeds like insects, small animals, bacteria and other micro-organisms work like an immune system that keeps plants healthy read more click here.  Vetiver has biological enzimes that keep some insects away.  Another great tree for insect control is the Neem tree.  Click this book to read all about it.
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  2. Chemical is the most effective method to controlling weeds. Herbicides can be used to kill weeds. These have two types; selective and non-selective. Selective kills weed only, where non-selective kills everything it touches.
  3. Cultural is a chemical that prevents new seeds from germinating, the best method of preventing weeds from spreading but is way too expensive in Haiti!
  4. vetiver grass mulching garden Pictures, Images and PhotosMulching: A great tool for weed control and easy to do in mountainside gardening with the fodder from vetiver grass and leaves of plants that are planted between the rows. This mulch not only keeps weeds from getting started but fertilizes the soil as it holds moisture for plants.
  5. Mechanical means is our last method and probably the least popular. This involves labor...even bending down and pulling by hand or with a tool to remove root and all. And if you only have a few, this is the best method.

Comment by Philip Wagner on July 4, 2011 at 7:49pm

What about Neem?

Please click on link below.

http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=1924&page=8

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