Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Composting of toxic weed Parthenium hysterophorus: nutrient changes, the fate of faecal coliforms, and biopesticide property assessment.

Abstract

This study aimed to investigate; composting of toxic weed Parthenium with cow dung in (2:1, and 1:1 ratio); and the changes in Escherichia coli and Salmonella population; as well as the antimicrobial property of ready compost. Organic carbon decreased by 45-52% while total nitrogen, total potassium, available phosphorus increased by 1.87- to 3.21-, 1.65- to 1.83-, and 4.03- to 3.33-folds, respectively in Parthenium setups. Germination index value (110-132%) indicates no phytotoxicity of composted Parthenium. E. coli reduced by 6.87 to 6.90 log population (< 1000 CFU g-1, safe limit) while Salmonella was in non-detectable limit in compost samples. Results of the antimicrobial test indicate a strong biocidal activity by non-sterilized compost extract against plant pathogens Xanthomonas citrus, Xanthomonas campestris, and Erwinia carotovora. Xanthomonas spp. It is concluded that thermophilic composting could convert Parthenium into a product with biomanure and biopesticide property for sustainable agriculture production.