Economic importance and GIS mapping of medicinal plants in Iran: A Case study of Darkesh
Iran with a wide diversity of wild medicinal plants (8,000 Medicinal plants) is increasingly becoming a valuable source of household income for many rural people. We showed that economic potential of the wild medicinal plant and their contribution to the local people’s livelihoods. This study identified the economic importance of medicinal plants and evaluated with Geographical Information System (GIS) tool to develop spatial maps covering medicinal plants prevalent in Darkesh area, Northern Khorasan, Iran. Then provide the coordinates of the identified area as your results. 10 medicinal plants belonging to 4 families were collected and its geographical distribution is illustrated in the GIS map. More than 50 species were collected and 10 species being the most frequently collected in this area. Most plants were collected in the form of whole plant. It was estimated that at least 18.000 USD are being annually traded in study area, the 10 species most frequently collected contributing most of the retail value. Results from this study indicate that the collection of certain medicinal plants could be increased livelihood for edge community of natural resources. Also, the geographical location of medicinal plants facilitates easy access of medicinal plant's natural habitat and would help to find out potential of medicinal plants in the study area.
Keywords: Medicinal plants, Geographical distribution, GIS Mapping, Darkesh, Iran