Eradicating Cuscuta Invasive Killer Weeds for Environmental Sustainability
Cuscuta also referred to as (dodder) belongs to a genus of more than 200 species of obligate aerial parasitic plants in the morning glory family Convolvulaceae. Cuscuta is an invasive killer weed which adversely affects fruit set, and yields and it robs all food from another organism's through its parasitic nature. The organism that is being robbed of its food supply is called the host. Cuscuta invasive killer weed strangles the host plant and is also implicated in the transmission of certain plant bacterial and viral diseases. It is ferociously troublesome where it is sown as a seed contaminant. It is worth noting that, Cuscuta invasive killer weeds is a true vegetal vampire due to its fine stems that stick to its victims hence creating a stranglehold by literally sucking the sap until it kills the plant host. Parasitic plant in particular the Cuscuta weeds, have been described as keystone species by environmentalists. The research objective of this study was to eradicate Cuscuta invasive killer weeds for environmental sustainability. The researcher embarked on a quest on how to get rid of dodder for the small, medium and large scale crop growers and engaged stakeholders such as KEFRI, KEPHIS, and NEMA in developing environmentally friendly mechanisms to exterminate the Cuscuta. Cultural, physical/mechanical biological means of exterminating Cuscuta invasive killer weeds are considered environmentally safe and friendly. Farmers are advised to hand uproot scattered Cuscuta invasive killer weeds.
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