Local Perceptions on the Status, Values and Conservation and Ethnobotanical Implications of Medicinal and Multipurpose Plants in and Around Selected Church Forests in Central Ethiopia

Eguale Tadesse (Ethiopian Environment and Forest Research Institute (EEFRI), 24536 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia)

Article ID: 2367

DOI: https://doi.org/10.30564/re.v2i3.2367


Societies have varied attitude and perception on the forest resources nearby them. Ethnobotanical knowledge should be integrated with biophysical studies in order to be used for managing and conserving forests. The objectives of the study were to assess the existing knowledge about the uses of plant species and to examine the plant species. Three sites were selected around central Ethiopia encompassing three church forests. Focus group discussion, questionnaire-based social survey and vegetation inventory were undertaken. The focus group discussants were selected from traditional healers, elders of the society, development agents, and people who are knowledgeable about the vegetation of the areas. Voucher specimens were collected for those species difficult to identify . The data analysis was done by descriptive statistics using Excel 2010 and SPSS v20. The results indicated agricultural expansion, charcoal making and fuel wood as the major causes of deforestation in Site 1, Site 2 and Site 3 respectively. Religious preaching was stated by group discussants as the most effective solution to reverse the degradation and to protect the church forests. The plant species have varied uses as traditional medicine, food, construction wood, household utensils, and firewood but higher percent of the mentioned species were used either for human or livestock medicine. Sørensen similarity index indicated Site 1 and Site 2 have 12.5%, Site 1 and Site 3 have 10.9% and Site 2 and Site 3 have 43.5% similarities. Documenting the wealth of indigenous knowledge and in situ conservation of the plant species are key recommendations.


Agricultural expansion;Plant species; Traditional healers; Traditional medicine; Vegetation inventory

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