Floristic Diversity of Jorgo Wato Forest and Ethnobotanical Study of Medicinal and Wild Edible Plants in Nole Kaba District, West Wollega, Oromia Region, Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa University


The research was carried out in Nole Kaba District to study the floristic diversity, structure, composition of Jorgo Wato Forest (JWF) and ethnobotany of medicinal and wild edible plants used in selected areas of Nole Kaba District. Floristic data were collected from a total of 73 plots applying standard plot sizes. The number of individuals, dbh (diameter at breast height), and height of woody species (dbh > 2.5 cm) were enumerated and measured in each plot; their cover abundance was estimated. Ethnobotanical data were documented through semistructured interviews (371 general informants of whom 174 were females & (12 key informants), group discussions, field observations, market surveys, and pairwise comparisons. Forest structural attributes were computed using descriptive statistics; plant communities were classified using cluster analysis. Redundancy Analysis was employed to analyze relationship between species distribution and environmental factors. Shannon diversity indices were employed to estimate species diversity. ANOVA, Sorenson's similarity, and correlation analysis were computed to analyze mean differences, similarity and relationships in floristic data. Ethnobotanical data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and quantitative indices such as Factor of Informant Consensus (Fic), Fidelity Level (FL), Pairwise Ranking, Correlation, Sorenson Similarity, Use Value and Cultural Importance Index (CI). ANOVA was employed to test the variation in ethnobotanical knowledge among informants and Multiple Linear Regressions (MLR) was employed to determine the strength of the influence of variables that contributed to the knowledge variation. The floristic study found a total of 237 species belonging to 192 genera and 82 families. The highest Important Value Index was recorded for Pouteria adolfi-friederici, followed by Syzygium guineense subsp. afromontanum. Five plant community types were identified. Species diversity and evenness were 3.73 and 0.80, respectively. Altitude and slope significantly influenced (p < 0.05) species distribution across plant community types. One hundred sixty two medicinal plants belonging to 135 genera and 65 families were found from the ethnomedicinal and ethnoveterinsary study. The highest proportion of medicinal plants were herbs (47.5%), followed by shrubs (27.8%). Ehretia cymosa (FL = 100%), Pentas schimperiana (FL = 100%) and Loxogramme abyssinica (FL = 94%) were among the medicinal plants showing high informant consensus. Age, healing experience, gender, and proximity to forest revealed significant variation and these together accounted for 34.7% (R2 = 0.347) of the total variation in ethnomedicinal knowledge among informants. The ethnobotanical study also found 39 WEPs species belonging to 31 genera and 27 families that are consumed by the community. Nutritional analysis of selected wild edible fruits found rich nutritional composition in the fruits. Medicinal plants with high informant consensus and wild edible fruits (e.g. Carissa spinarum, Syzygium guineense subsp. afromontanum, Ximenia americana) with rich nutritional composition are recommended for further development and conservation.



Ethnobotany, Floristic Diversity, Indigenous Knowledge, Medicinal Plants, Wild Edible Plants