An ethnobotanical study of medicinal plants in Wayu Tuka District, East Welega Zone of Oromia Regional State, West Ethiopia

Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine (Impact Factor: 1.98). 09/2013; 9(1):68. DOI: 10.1186/1746-4269-9-68
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT This paper reports an ethnobotanical study that focused on the traditional medicinal plants used by local communities to treat human and livestock ailments. A cross-sectional study was undertaken from September 2009 to June 2010 in Wayu Tuka District of Oromia Region, Ethiopia. The aim of the study is to document medicinal plants used by local people of the study area and the threats currently affecting medicinal plants.
Ethnobotanical data were collected using semi-structured interviews, field observations and group discussion in which 63 (41 men & 22 women) randomly selected informants participated. Of which, 11 (10 male and 1 female) were local healers. Paired comparison method, direct matrix ranking and Informant consensus factors (ICF) were used to analyze the importance of some plant species.
A total of 126 medicinal plant species, distributed in 108 genera and 56 families, were collected together with their medicinal uses. Of the 126 species of medicinal plants collected from the study area, eighty six (68%) were obtained from the wild whereas thirty three (26%) were from homegardens. The Fabaceae came out as a leading family with 15 medicinal species while the Solanaceae followed with eight species. Seventy eight (62%) of the medicinal plants were reported as being used for treating human ailments, 23 (18.2%) for the treatment of livestock ailments and 25 (20%) for both. The most frequently used plant parts were leaves (43%), followed by roots (18.5%) while crushing, which accounted for (29%) and powdering (28%) were the widely used methods of preparation of traditional herbal medicines.
The number of reported medicinal plants and their uses by the local people of the District indicate the depth of the local indigenous knowledge on medicinal plants and their application. The documented medicinal plants can serve as a basis for future investigation of modern drug.

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