2010 - Volume 8 : Ethnobotany Research and Applications

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    Uses and Commercial Prospects for the Wine Palm, Attalea butyracea, in Colombia
    (University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2010) Bernal, Rodrigo ; Galeano, Gloria ; García, Néstor ; Olivares, Ingrid Lorena ; Cocomá, Carolina
    Attalea butyracea (Mutis ex L.f.) Wess. Boer is a massive and abundant palm that grows in dry areas of northern, central and eastern Colombia, where it ranks as one of the most useful plants. Thirty-six uses in eight use categories are recorded for this species in Colombia, including food, animal feed, medicine, construction, and technological and cultural uses. Most uses have only minor, local relevance, but some of them have potential that is worth exploring. The potential of the palm as a source of sugar, oil, palm heart, fiber, animal feed, and activated charcoal is discussed. Sugar production seems particularly promising; if the palm can be tapped through the inflorescence in the same way that other palms are tapped in Asia, sugar production in an integrated agrosilvopastoral system could be comparable to that of sugarcane planted for jaggery production. We suggest that this palm also has potential as a source of biofuel.
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    The North American Lotus (Nelumbo lutea Willd.); Sacred food of the Osage People
    (University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2010) Swan, Daniel C.
    The North American Lotus (Nelumbo lutea Willd.) is well documented as an important food plant among the Native people of North America. This paper presents ethnographic and historic evidence of its past veneration by the Osage Indians of Oklahoma as a sacred food and a symbol of their desire for health and long life, particularly for their children. Today N. lutea has become a prominent traditional food among the Osage and an important culinary element in contemporary Osage cultural identity.
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    Arundo donax L. (Giant reed) Use by Turkish Cypriots
    (University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2010) Gücel, Salih
    A survey about the traditional uses of Arundo donax L. (Giant reed) by Turkish Cypriots was carried out. Sixty inhabitants from 25 areas were interviewed about the vernacular names, plant part used and forms of usage. Twenty-seven ways of utilizing this plant were recorded. The ethnobotanical importance of Arundo should be considered in the management of this plant.
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    Ethnobotanical Uses of Plants among the Bhotiya Tribal Communities of Niti Valley in Central Himalaya, India
    (University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2010) Phondani, P.C. ; Maikhuri, R.K. ; Rawat, L.S. ; Farooquee, N.A. ; Kala, C.P. ; Vishvakarma, SCR ; Rao, K.S. ; Saxena, K.G.
    A study of the medicinal plants and knowledge of diseases was conducted in Bhotiya tribal communities in the Niti valley of Alaknanda catchment in Central Himalaya. Indigenous knowledge of local traditional healers about plants used for medicinal purposes was collected through questionnaire and interviews. Eighty-six plant species were identified as being used for treatment of 37 common ailments. The methods and application of uses of these plants varies and was based on the nature of disease.
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    Ethnobotanical Study of the Rural Population of the West of the Pampa Plain (Argentina)
    (University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2010) Muiño, Walter Alejandro
    This paper is an ethnobotanical study of cattle farming in the western Pampa region of Argentina, an arid region with very scarce rainfall and a population consisting mainly of Criollo farmers. A total of 68 rural settlers were interviewed, providing information on 69 specific and infraspecific taxa. Plants were classified into the following categories according to use: forage, toxic species or species with adverse effects on animals, use in rural constructions, tools, and those with veterinary applications. Data include native, naturalized and cultivated species. They revealed a diverse group of forage plants, according to the type of livestock, and very few toxic plants. Veterinary applications were related to first aid cases. In rural construction, plants were mostly used for fencing paddocks and corrals. The results of this study show the acute level of perception and detailed knowledge of the plant environment held by this farming community in relation to their main economic activity.