ACIAR (Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research) evaluated Master Tree Grower (MTG) Program, a program that gives some trainings to local farmers forestry technique skill to maximize tree growth as the result. MTG program was held in Pati, 2014 with 17 farmers joined this program.
This evaluation aims to know the influence of MTG program to local farmers in Pati. This activity was held November 2-6th 2016 by Mr. Muktasam from Mataram University as MTG evaluator, represents ACIAR.
The evaluation was mostly about meeting the farmers, and visiting the lands, seeing the trees. The meeting was going naturally between Mr. Muktasam and the farmers, a lot of discussions and ideas were explored. This continued when lands visiting, farmers were excited to tell about their trees, what they do everyday, what kind of trees that they have. And of course, they also mentioned their struggle especially about diseases that often attack Albizia: gall rust (karafuru in local) and caterpillars bag.
Those diseases, according to farmers, are the most difficult to kill and still no potent solution found. Even when they cut all the trees, the diseases will appear when new trees are planted. Karafuru, or trees tumor, attacks tree stems, inhibits its growth, to death at some conditions. While caterpillars bags attack leaves part of the tree.
This evaluation will also help ACIAR and Trees4Trees to find out what things that farmers really need for their skill and trees planting activity, from beginning to end of trees planting business.