Weed is farmer’s enemy, but in the hands of five UGM students weeds give benefits to agriculture.
It was Ayu Putri Subowo, Antonius Berlianto l, Joshua Eka Putra, Lidwina Arum Meta W., and Maria Hera Gratias (agriculture students) who turned the weed into compost, liquid fertilisers, and biochar in the Weeds Fertilizer project.
“Up to this day, farmers dump weeds by burning or spraying them with herbicides that have negative impact on the environment,” said Ayu on Monday (9/7) at UGM.
Starting from this condition, Ayu and friends tried to find a way to resolve the problem of weed growing rapidly and massively.
The Weeds Fertilizer programme has earned funding from the Higher Learning Directorate General through the Student Creativity Programme for Community Service. The programme has run in Temanggung hamlet in Sleman regency where the students give training to the farmers on how to make the weeds into fertilisers.
Weeds that have hard textures are made into compost while weeds with watery textures are turned into liquid fertilisers. Woody weeds are made as biochar. Some of the weeds can also be utilised as cattle feed and drugs, Ayu added.
“The weeds that are turned into a number of products can help fertilise the plants and improve soil structures. This way the cost of buying fertilisers will be minimised,” she said,