Prof Rajneesh K Sharma and Satendra K Yadav, Department of Zoology, Kurukshetra University, have invented a machine to obtain green manure from dead leaves. They have named it — “Dry Leaves Manure Maker”.
The machine, which can be of great help to marginal farmers, orchid owners, municipal committees and other organisations, will help reduce pollution, space requirement and manpower.
Lt-Gen DDS Sandhu, Vice-Chancellor, Kurukshetra University, has congratulated Professor Sharma and Yadav for the invention.
Prof Sharma told mediapersons here today that by using this technique, the volume of leaves would be greatly reduced and heaps of leaves could be packed in gunny bags. They could be used as manure or converted into vermicompost or organic manure as per the need of the farmer concerned.
“This technique is the quickest of all existing methods of generating green manure. This is eco-friendly, wherein no smoke or harmful gases are released during the disposal of dead leaves and litter, and thus helps reduce pollution. The machine will chop leaves and increase the surface area of the leaves for the attack of microbes for faster degradation,” said Professor Sharma.
The disposal of dry leaves and plant litter is not an easy task. The major problem is that dry leaves cover a large area and can catch fire. Dry leaves are often burnt to clean space. However, this results in the production of a large number of toxic gases like benzopyrene, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and nitric oxide, which get released into the environment, causing a number of health problems like asthma, breathlessness, burning of eyes, irritation of throat, allergy and even cancer. These gases also influence the surrounding green vegetation.
Another method used traditionally was enviburying leaves in pits where these get converted into manure. However, in this method, a lot of space was required for the disposal of dry leaves. It was also a labour-intensive process, wherein collection of dry leaves, digging of pit, burying of dry leaves and then digging out the same site for the collection of manure required manpower, he added.