PA­PER MUL­BERRY TREE USES STUD­IED

Agriculture - - Research -

PA­PER MUL­BERRY TREE, which has soft and brit­tle wood, can be made into char­coal, liquor or wood vine­gar, hand­made pa­per, scrunch, and bent wood as high­lighted in a project.

Ti­tled “Pro­cess­ing and Wood Qual­ity Eval­u­a­tion of Pa­per Mul­berry ( Brous­sone­tia pa­pyrifera (L.) L’Herit ex Vent) for Fur­ni­ture, Hand­i­crafts and Other By-prod­ucts,” the project is funded by the Philip­pine Coun­cil for Agri­cul­ture, Aquatic and Nat­u­ral Re­sources Re­search and De­vel­op­ment of the Depart­ment of Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy (DOST-PCAARRD) and im­ple­mented by the DOST-For­est Prod­ucts Re­search and De­vel­op­ment In­sti­tute (DOST-FPRDI).

Pa­per mul­berry, lo­cally known as “lap­nis”, can be classified as a large shrub or a small tree with a soft and brit­tle wood. It was in­tro­duced in the Philip­pines in the early 1930s as a re­for­esta­tion species and as al­ter­na­tive source of fiber. How­ever, it can grow fast and spread eas­ily via seed dis­per­sal, pri­mar­ily through birds and other an­i­mals that feed on its fruits.

Due to its ex­ces­sive growth and in­va­sive char­ac­ter­is­tics, the project team con­ducted the study on the pos­si­ble prod­ucts that can be uti­lized from lap­nis to con­trol and man­age its fur­ther spread and in­va­sive­ness.

The team also con­ducted sawmilling tri­als, wherein re­sult­ing data were com­puted for lum­ber re­cov­ery and grad­ing anal­y­sis.

Ad­di­tional log sam­ples were col­lected and sawn us­ing the FPRDI band­mill. The log trims, tops, and branches were then con­verted into char­coal us­ing the FPRDI drum kiln. The next phase for the project is the as­sess­ment of ac­cept­abil­ity fac­tor of the de­vel­oped pa­per mul­berry prod­ucts in the lo­cal com­mu­nity.

Fully-grown pa­per mul­berry tree.

Pa­per mul­berry tree on the road­side go­ing to Mt. Mak­il­ing, Los Baños, La­guna.

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