Journal of Ecology and Environment

pISSN 2287-8327 eISSN 2288-1220

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Published online April 18, 2022
https://doi.org/10.5141/jee.22.015

Journal of Ecology and Environment (2022) 46:11

Population structure and regeneration of Zanthoxylum armatum DC. in Salyan, Nepal

Nirmala Phuyal1,2* , Pramod Kumar Jha1 , Pankaj Prasad Raturi3 and Sangeeta Rajbhandary1

1Central Department of Botany, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu 44600, Nepal
2Forest Research and Training Center, Ministry of Forests and Environment, Kathmandu 44600, Nepal
3Ashok Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Center, Dabur Nepal Pvt. Ltd., Kavre 45210, Nepal

Correspondence to:Nirmala Phuyal
E-mail nirmalaphuyal@gmail.com

Received: February 7, 2022; Revised: March 22, 2022; Accepted: March 23, 2022

This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ The publisher of this article is The Ecological Society of Korea in collaboration with The Korean Society of Limnology

Abstract

Background: Zanthoxylum armatum is one of the 30 prioritized medicinal plants for economic development of Nepal with a high trade value. Understanding the ecology of individual species is important for conservation and cultivation purposes. However, relation of ecological factors on the distribution and populations of Z. armatum in Nepal remain unknown. To address this knowledge gap, an attempt has been made to study the population structure, distribution, and regeneration potentiality of Z. armatum. Vegetation sampling was conducted at six different localities of Salyan district along the elevation range of 1,000 m to 2,000 m.
Results: Altogether 50 plant species belonging to 44 genera under 34 families were found to be associated with Z. armatum. Significantly higher species richness was found at Rim (1,400–1,700 m) and Chhatreshwori (1,800–2,000 m) and lower at Kupinde (1,600–1,800 m). The highest population density of Z. armatum was at Kupinde (1,600–1,800 m) with a total of 1,100 individuals/ha. and the lowest at Chhatreshwori (1,800–2,000 m) with 740 individuals/ha. Based on the A/F value (Whitford index), it can be said that Z. armatum has random distribution in the study area. The plants were categorized into seedlings, saplings and adults based on plant height and the status of natural regeneration category determined. The regeneration potentiality of Z. armatum in the study area was fair with the average seedlings and saplings densities of 150 and 100 individuals/ha. Respectively. A Shannon–Weinner index mean value of 2.8 was obtained suggesting high species diversity in the study area.
Conclusions: The natural distribution and regeneration of Z. armatum is being affected in the recent years due to anthropogenic disturbances. Increasing market demand and unsustainable harvesting procedures are posing serious threat to Z. armatum. Thus, effective conservation and management initiatives are most important for conserving the natural population of Z. armatum in the study area.

Keywords: density, distribution, ecology, population, species diversity, regeneration

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Journal of Ecology and Environment

pISSN 2287-8327 eISSN 2288-1220