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University of Johannesburg (2018)

Medicinal ethnobotany of the Little Karoo, South Africa

Hulley, Isabel Margaret

Titre : Medicinal ethnobotany of the Little Karoo, South Africa

Auteur : Hulley, Isabel Margaret

Université de soutenance : University of Johannesburg

Grade : PHILOSOPHIAE DOCTOR in BOTANY 2018

Résumé partiel
A comprehensive ethnobotanical study was conducted in the Little Karoo region of the western Cape Province in South Africa with an emphasis on traditional medicinal plant uses. This detailed ethnobotanical study revealed a wealth of traditional medicinal plant knowledge that has hitherto remained unrecorded. The main results are summarised in the form of a comprehensive inventory of all Little Karoo plants (ca. 3773 taxa) in which the main uses (if any) of all the plants are indicated (see Appendix 7). This complete inventory is a valuable contribution that eliminates the many shortcomings of traditional checklists (i.e. the popularity or importance of the plants that cannot be judged since no indication is given ; the absence of acknowledgements that should be given in the information as to indicate if a single entry or multiple entries refer to the same species and use and the lack of determining the most popular species). Based on qualitative and quantitative surveys, including the scientific and local literature (Rood, 1994 ; Anonymous, 1998, 2001 ; De Jager, 2010 ; Britz, 2011 ; Mostert and Van Elfen, unpublished and Vlok and Schutte-Vlok, 2016), a total of 287 medicinal plants from 181 genera and 79 families, 772 grazing plants from 284 genera and 83 families, 119 edible plants from 70 genera and 44 families and 45 craft plants from 34 genera and 26 families are listed. This inventory allows for an assessment of new records, i.e. previously unrecorded vernacular names and uses of Little Karoo plants. As a contribution to a better understanding of the Cape Herbal Medicine system, quantitative ethnobotanical surveys were conducted in nine towns of the Little Karoo : four in the western part (Barrydale, Calitzdorp, Vanwyksdorp and Zoar) and five in the eastern parts (De Rust, Dysselsdorp, Haarlem, Uniondale and Volmoed). A total of 101 local participants were involved in this study of which 86 participants took part in formal interviews using the Matrix Method as the main research tool.

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