Many of our local plants contain helpful chemicals, particularly alkaloids, that are effective against fungal and bacterial diseases of other plants. Thus, they are mixed with the soil to control the fungus that causes the diseases of seedlings. Allow the leaves to decompose for about one week before transplanting the seedlings. Some of these leaves are as follows:

abaca leaves chico sampaloc

avocado "kakawate" sampaguita

alibangbang garlic orchid santan-pula

acacia datiles santol

ampalaya jackfruit tanglad

atis lanzones eggplant

guavas rimas beans (red variety)

coconut onions chichirica

calamansi ginger upo

star-apple papaya sugarcane

cacao malunggay watermelon

cassava cowpea tobacco

calachuci saluyot

Thus, using plant leaves in controlling disease-causing organisms is no doub cheaper than pesticides and insecticides. It is also simpler and easier to apply by merely incorporating the leaves with soil during cultivation. When decomposed, the leaves release certain chemicals which prevents harmful bacteria and fungi from attacking the crops. Besides controlling diseases, the leaves also increase the organic matter content of the soil, improving its structure and fertility.

Source: Philippine Farmers' Journal June 1982


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