Flowers waste management is a must-know issue for the flower farmers and producers as well as consumers. As much as flowers are very important to the Kenyan economy in many ways, for instance earning the country foreign exchange, its production should never be a threat to the Kenyan environment. This is why before farmers begin to venture into flower farming they need to have clear and laid out strategies on how they will conduct flowers waste management.
Like any other products, flower production could lead to a lot of toxic waste which could pose risk to the environment and the flora and fauna in the ecosystem. Effective ways hence need to be employed to minimize this pollution or eliminate it. This is done through flowers waste management.
Wastes from flower farms
Every day, huge amounts of wastes are generated from the flower market. Some are toxic, others are not. However, all of them need to be managed effectively. The most common wastes are;
Dried flower petals; this is a common waste in farms, at the flower shops and even in the homes when the flowers dry after their life time is due.
Unabsorbed fertilizers and pesticides; this is usually the least amount of waste produced from the flower farms. It has however turned out to be a serious toxic waste, leading to water and land pollution.
Ways of flower waste management.
The following are some things that farmers and flower processing industries could do to ensure flower waste management, some may seem obvious or simple but they are equally important in minimizing water, air and land pollution.
Turning flower waste into organic manure; dry petals and leaves are biodegradable hence could be decomposed and returned to the farms as organic manure , this will reduce pollution as well as save the farmers money used to buy fertilizers.
Proper use of pesticides and fertilizers; pesticides should be used in the required amount to prevent remain of the chemicals that could be washed into river sources hence pose danger to the aquatic lives. Used cans and tins should also be disposed appropriately.
Replanting pruned petals; there are some flowers that grow very well from cuttings. Instead of disposing the cuttings and polluting the environment, farmers could apply this form of flowers waste management.
Using the waste to generate energy; Kenya Flower Council (KFC) recently gave a report on how flowers could be used to generate energy, mainly biogas. Although this has not been fully embraced in the country since it is yet to be fully confirmed, this will give farmers more options on how to properly manage the numerous flower wastes. This will also help the flower farms to save on overall electricity cost.
Flowers waste management is something that we cannot ignore or assume, in the same way that we can never ignore flower production. Every farmer should employ the type of waste management forms that they are most comfortable with. This will ensure that the farmer and their employees stay in a healthy environment hence increasing their productivity. Having accessed this information, let us strive to employ flowers waste management in Kenya.