'Controlling weeds only way to save lakes'

Weeds often pose a challenge to the revival of lakes and wreak havoc on golf courses and cricket stadiums. Here is a Banglorean who has been putting the best use of his expertise to control and manage weeds.

Agronomist T V Muniyappa, popularly known as ‘Kale’ Muniyappa, has a passion for controlling and managing weeds.

He has been hired as a consultant by various golf courses and cricket stadiums and is currently involved in weed management at the Bangalore Golf Club and the Chikmagalur Golf Club.

He has also been a consultant for the Karnataka Golf Association’s golf course, JSS-KSCA Cricket Stadium, Mysore, and Mangalore Golf Course, among others.

“Weed growth cannot be stopped, it can only be controlled. A combination of various herbicides used in the right proportion can control their growth and also measures such as manual removal of weeds, insects (biological control), and chemical methods can be adopted,” said Muniyappa. 

He added that at the Bangalore Golf Club, Cyperus species of weeds are prominent while at the JSS-KSCA stadium broad-leaved weeds are more. “To chalk out weed solutions, identification of the weeds, knowing their growing pattern and their biology is vital,” he said. 

A former president of the Indian Society of Weed Science (ISWS), Muniyappa underwent advanced training in weed control at the Royal Veterinary Agricultural University, Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1970.

He has also served at the University of Agricultural Sciences (UAS), Bangalore, for over 30 years and has published over 200 research papers on weed management in national and international journals.

He also responds to farmers queries on weed menace over telephone.  While for management of weeds at golf courses and stadiums, he charges a consultant fee. He also offers free service to farmers. 

On the current status of Bangalore lakes, Muniyappa said, “Over 50 per cent of the water bodies are choked with water hyacinth. Adopting weed control solutions is the only way to save them. In the mid-eighties, measures were taken to remove aquatic weeds at Hebbal Lake, but now they have grown again.”

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