Assessment of popular knowledge and uses of Vigna subterranea (L.) for prebreeding programs in Douala (Cameroon)
The main goal of this study is to assess the endogenous knowledge on the diversity of V. subterranea (L.) and its different habits using an ethnobotanical survey in five (05) districts of Douala in the Littoral region of Cameroon. To achieve this objective, the survey was realised on among 170 households from 18 neighbourhoods and 118 traders working in 12 markets from Douala I, II, III, IV and V. Subsequently, the survey revealed that surveyed originated from nine (09) ethnic groups belonging to the Littoral, West, Centre and North Cameroon Regions, forming a representative sample for the country. The study reveals a variety of local nomenclature from one ethnic group to another, such as “Matobo”, “Matobi” and “Matopi” having dominantly the same radical “Matob” in the coastal area and suggesting the same source of languages. The seed colour (77.08%) appear as the main popular criterion for the recognition of morphotypes (multicolored ~77.66%, white ~14.77%, red ~3.38%, brown ~3.38% and black ~1.27%). The consumption of seeds (fresh or cooked) is ubiquitous but can induce few undesirable effects such as diarrhoea, constipation and allergies. The survey equally reveals therapeutic effects (29.6%) of organs on digestive disorders, cataracts, and infected wounds. These results permit to identify the rich secular knowledge, culinary habits and medicinal virtues linked to morphotypes usable for prebreeding programs of V. subterranea.
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