Chinese Journal of Medical History / Zhong Hua Yi Shi Za Zhi

[This article belongs to Volume - 53, Issue - 03]

Abstract : Knowledge related to the uses of plant resources must be the subject of research to contribute to their protection and evaluation and avoid their decline, which has been of concern in recent times. The objectives of this study were therefore to examine plant biodiversity and reveal the central importance of the types of use of wild plants by rural populations. It is also a question of evaluating the levels of traditional knowledge according to socio-economic characteristics using an ethnobotanical survey on wild plants (WPs) in selected rural communes of Berrechid and Sidi Bennour in the Casablanca-Settat region (CSR) in Morocco. Methodology: An ethnobotanical survey was conducted on a sample of 100 respondents aged 17 to 128 from the local population, using a semi-structured questionnaire, to collect information on the traditional uses of WPs. Data were analyzed using relative frequency of citation (RFC) and informant consensus factor (ICF). Results: The data analysis made it possible to identify 78 species of vascular plants from 34 families with a significant representativeness of the Asteraceae (12%) followed by the Apiaceae (7%), the Fabaceae (6%), the Lamiaceae and the Solanaceae. (5%), Brassicaceae (4%), Caryophyllaceae, Chenopodiaceae and Polygonaceae (3%) then simultaneously Urticaceae, Euphorbia and Poaceae (2%). Based on the culinary uses and modes of consumption of WPs cited by the population, these plants, in addition to medicinal and cosmetic uses, could be classified into six food categories. The majority of WPs were used as 31℅ vegetables, 25℅ spices, and 20℅ snacks, eaten raw in the fields by herdsmen and youths. Other WPs were used either as beverages (11℅), to garnish dishes (9℅) or as cooked roots (5℅). The RFC ranged from 0.02 (Verbascum sinuatum L.) to 1 (Allium roseum L., Ridolfia segetum Moris, Lavatera cretica L.) for food use, Mercurialis annua L., Limonium sinuatum (L.), (Limonium sinuatum (L.) Miller subsp. beaumierianum (Maire) Sauv. & Vindt.) for food and medicine uses. The ICF for WPs is very high (0.97). The most used parts are, respectively, the aerial parts (60%), roots (17.5%), Flowers (10℅), Seeds (6.25℅), Fruits (5℅), Rhizomes and Tubers (3.75℅) and Bulbs and Berries (1.25℅). Furthermore, ethnobotanical analysis provides data for further nutritional and pharmacological studies.