Survey on medicinal plants and spices used in Beni-Sueif, Upper Egypt
1 Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Beni-Sueif University, P.O. Box 62111, Beni-Sueif, Egypt
2 Department of Flora & Phyto-Taxonomy Researches, Horticultural Research Institute, Agricultural Research Centre, P.O. Box 12311, Giza, Egypt
Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine 2011, 7:18 doi:10.1186/1746-4269-7-18Published: 27 June 2011
This study was conducted to identify medicinal plants and spices used for medicine by the community of Beni-Sueif, Upper Egypt.
Ethnobotanical data from local people was collected using direct interviews and a semi-structured questionnaire.
Forty-eight plant species belonging to twenty-seven families and forty-seven genera were encountered during the study. Their botanical and vernacular names, plant parts used and medicinal uses are given. Results of the study were analyzed using two quantitative tools. The factor informant consensus indicated the agreement in the use of plants and the fidelity level indicated the ratio between the number of informants who independently suggested the use of a species for the same major purpose and the total number of informants who mentioned the plant for any use. The results of the factor informant consensus showed that the cardiovascular category has the greatest agreement, followed by the immunological, gastrointestinal and respiratory categories. The most important species according to their fidelity are: Hibiscus sabdariffa L. for the cardiovascular category; Trigonella foenum-graecum L. for the immunological category; Mentha piperita L. for the gastrointestinal category and Pimpinella anisum L. for the respiratory category.
Medicinal plants are still used for treatment in Beni-Sueif community despite the availability of prescribed medications. Documentation of this ethnomedicinal knowledge is important. Evaluation of pharmacological activity for the promising medicinal plants is suggested.