Alternative herbicides

More and more peasants in Moatize use alternative herbacides to protect their production (Tump 2009)

Alternative herbicides reduce the production costs of horticulture in Moatize

The use of chemical products applied in agricultural production can harm the person working with these substances and the consumer of the product. Even more its application can influence the ecosystem. A less drastic but sufficient alternative lies in the use of alternative herbicides.

The horticulture of the participants in our program are therefore treated with alternative herbicides. This way they produce healthier agricultural products, avoid contamination of the product and its consumer, keep the ecosystem's balance, protect the fauna- and water-resources, reduce the amount of aggressive chemicals in use, reduce the production costs, strengthen their plants against diseases and enhance the viability of their product.

The alternative herbicides are made out of local plants. In most of the recipes curd soap is mixed in with the leaves to form a solution. Pieces of cloth or of a bag are used as a filter.

Application should be in the early morning hours, or shortly thereafter, in order to minimize the harm of the predators. Use a vaporizer, a watering-can or simply drenched leaves and sprinkle the solution onto the plants.

You must be very careful in the handling of alternative herbicides. The use of an old pot, which will not be used otherwise, is recommended and the solution should be stored out of the reach of children. Plastic gloves or bags should cover the hands and all plants that received treatment must be cleaned before use.

Recipe of an alternative herbicide used on our horticulture
•    Take two handful of dried leaves (200g) or cigarette tips.
•    Boil them for 15-20 minutes in two litres of water.
•    Add curd soap, stir and let it cool off. Now it can be filtered.
•    Dissolve in 5 litres of water

This solution is to be applied once per week.
It is effective against lizards, aphids, acarids and ticks on animals.