Ethnobotanical Studies On Some Weeds Of Wheat Fields In Upper Indus Plains, Punjab, Pakistan
Systematic surveys were conducted by taking a sample of 700 local people, collectors, farmers, hakeems, herbalists (stockiests, dealers/traders) and other related persons from 70 villages: 10 on the way from Lahore to Faisalabad via Shahkot, 10 around Gujranwala, 5 near Jaranwala, 5 near Khanki Head Works, 20 on the way from Head Baloki to Head Sulemanki, 5 around Raiwind, 5 near Kangan Pur, and 10 around Lahore except the Indian border to document the indigenous knowledge on weed flora in wheat fields by ways of Personal observations, Interviews and Questionnaires. The inhabitants of the Indus Valley always use weeds for various ailments and for a long time remain dependent on surrounding plant as providers of medicines (locally used for common diseases like cough, fever, diarrhea, pain, worms and skin diseases), fodder, food, oil, feed, household, shelter, wildlife, fuel, soil & water conservation, construction materials, pulp & paper and fiber etc. The inhabitants of the Indus Valley always use weeds for various ailments and for a long time remain dependent on surrounding plant resources for their medicinal, fodder, food, oil, shelter, fuel and other cultural purposes. Most of the farmers of the area are unaware of its useful weedy characteristics. This indigenous knowledge is restricted to the elders especially women of the area In total 32 categories were recorded, as used medicinally, nutritionally and culturally by local inhabitants, potential weeds as medicinal plants numbered 67, 40 species as fodder, 34 species as feed/food, 15 weeds for oil extraction, 6 species as fuel source and soil & water conservation, 5 species were being considered as poisonous, 4 as narcotics, 14 used in chemical/dyes/paper industry, 37 as shelter, 38 species as traditionally used and 29 species were identified as used by locals for minor uses.