Attack of pests is the biggest menace faced by farmers. Insects tend to attack the plants for inhabiting, breeding, feeding and defending themselves from their enemies. When the plant becomes unsuitable to be their habitat, the insects leave it and search for another plant. This method is the key to choose an appropriate pest control strategy.
Green decoction or ‘Haritha Kashayam’ suggested in Vrikshayurveda (Ayurveda for trees) is an important solution for the pest menace. The plants that have strong odour and pungent flavour which no insect choose to inhabit are the major ingredients in the herbal decoction. Grasses and milky plants that produce sap when stems are broken are not suitable for the green decoction.
Malabar nut (Adalaodakam), black vitex (Karunochi), neem (Aryaveppu), poison nut (Kanjiram), Kiriyath, wild tobacco, raw camphor, lantana (Kongini), papaya, quick stick (Seemakkonna), hill glory bower (Peruvalam), Indian bael tree (Koovalam), oleander (Arali), camphor basil (Karpoora Thulasi) and similar plants that are the major ingredients in the decoction.
Green decoction is popular for its cost effectiveness. It utilises the weeds in our surroundings and is completely eco-friendly. Some of the self-help groups of farmers have attained great success by using the green decoction to end pest menace in their farms.