Friday, December 28, 2007


Crop plant lives that is.

Here is what I found when I was reading my Bible of Agriculture, the Handbook of Agriculture, published by the Indian Council of Agriculture. Indigenous Technical Knowledge shows the use of tobacco to save crop lives or to put it properly, to control pests.

  • A lethal tobacco decoction used to control larvae of Helicoverpa armigera in soybean. Here is the brew. 1.5-2 kg of green leaves of tobacco are boiled in 5-6 litres of water till the solution becomes dark brown. After filtration and cooling for 6-7 hours, 4-5 litres of the decoction are blended with 70-80 litres of water. The affected crop is sprayed with it every 6 days. Thus tobacco i.e. nicotine sounds the death knell for Helicoverpa armigera in soybean! Soybean saved! Long live soybean!
  • Murderous sticks! Farmers slot in sticks and rootlets of tobacco into the land by employing disc harrows. The Termites get nicotine kicks that toss them out of the gene pool!
  • 1 kg tobacco + 5 kg sand + 250 ml water = Tobacco poison for pests in maize. The mixture is slowly added to the crown of the crops, 20 days after the sowing of the crop. Stem borer insect infestation in 1 hectare is satisfactorily controlled with 6 kg of this mixture. 40thday after sowing sees the same treatment being repeated. It’s quite cheap too. Rs. 25 per hectare!

Go ahead let your plants consume tobacco.


Volksgrenadier said...

Best anti-depressant i ever laid my hands on :)

Swats said...

i second that!!!!

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An infectiously enthusiastic incorrigible optimist, insanely in love with and morbidly curious about life, death and everything in between.