Notes to broadcasters: Pest management

    | November 4, 2013

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    The article on which this story was based can be read in full through this link: http://www.irinnews.org/report/98982/plant-clinics-take-root-in-uganda

    Many farmers cannot afford to buy industrially-produced chemical pesticides to protect their crops against the pests and diseases which affect them. Farm Radio Weekly produced Notes to broadcasters on natural pesticides in August 2013 (FRW #256), which can be revisited here: http://weekly.farmradio.org/2013/08/05/notes-to-broadcasters-natural-pesticides/

    The plant doctor in the story, Daniel Lyazi, refers to the Diamondback moth. Script #9 from Farm Radio Resource Pack #72 (Controlling the Diamondback moth: a serious pest of the Brassica vegetable family, September 2004) can be read at this address: http://www.farmradio.org/radio-resource-packs/package-72-integrated-pest-management-strategies-for-farmers/controlling-the-diamondback-moth-a-serious-pest-of-the-brassica-vegetable-family/. Resource Pack #72 (Integrated Pest Management strategies for farmers, September 2004) contains other scripts on the subject of pest management, which can be accessed here: http://www.farmradio.org/radio-resource-packs/package-72-integrated-pest-management-strategies-for-farmers/

    Mr. Lyazi also recommends to a farmer that he “… grow onions alongside his cabbages as a moth repellent.” This is known as companion planting. Companion planting refers to planting different crops in proximity in order to enhance pest control and pollination, and to otherwise increase crop productivity. A Farm Radio International script, Local plants help control pests (FRRP #30, script #1, October 1993), may help farmers understand how companion plants control pests by explaining how plants protect themselves from insects. You can read it here: http://www.farmradio.org/radio-resource-packs/package-30/local-plants-help-control-pests/

    A simple but effective script on pest management is available here: http://www.farmradio.org/radio-resource-packs/package-10/preventing-insect-pest-damage-to-crops/ (FRRP # 10, script #9, Preventing Insect Pest Damage to Crops, July 1985)

    You can find out more about the global Plantwise program to improve food security and rural livelihoods by reducing crop losses, by visiting: http://www.plantwise.org/

    What techniques do farmers in your listening area use to reduce the losses caused by pests and diseases? Hybrid seeds? Shop-bought chemicals? Or do they know how to use companion planting, homemade treatments or other strategies? What are their secrets? Interview local farmers and then host a call-in program. Broadcasting their opinions will doubtless ensure that other farmers call in to offer their own ideas.