Improvement of Medicinal Plants in Andhra Pradesh

Andhra Pradesh has a rich floral diversity.  Out of a total number of 2586 species estimated about 1800 species are found to be medicinal plants in Andhra Pradesh. The Govt. of A.P, realizing the rich potential and diversity of Medicinal plants, have initiated efforts not only to conserve the gene pool of Medicinal Plants occurring the forests but also take up ex-situ cultivation with the following objectives (Page No.4). 

1.To conserve and improve the   threatened / endangered / endemic species of Medicinal Plants in the wild through MPCAs route and by arresting illicit removals through unscrupulous collectors.

 

2.      To create awareness amongst the general public on the importance of medicinal plants

and the Indian Systems of Medicine.

 3.      To standardize the cultivation practices of economically viable species suitable to different agro-climatic zones and to cultivate them to meet the requirement of the local Pharmaceutical Industry as well as entering global market.

 4.      To create self-sustenance to V.S.S by generating additional source of income.

 5.      To make A.P. products internationally recognized as per western standards.

6.      To establish linkages/market tie-ups between the producer and the leading industry. 

7.      Afforestation of degraded forests and encroached forest lands.  

8.      To create a databank of existing medicinal plants in the wild by conducting systematic and regular assessment surveys.  

9.      To utilize information technology (IT) to improve the trade. 

In Situ Conservation

The FRLHT Bangalore through a UNDP – GOI sponsored project has taken up field study and identified 8 Medicinal Plants Conservation Areas (MPCAs) in different agro-climatic zones covering a total area of 2015 ha constituting 0.03% of total forest area in the state.  The 8 MPCAs have captured about 700 plant species (632 medicinal plants) out of   a total number of 2586 plant species (1800 medicinal plants) in A.P. The Forest Department through reference No.22453/98/U2 dt.10.11.2000 declared MPCAs as no-harvest zone prohibiting all activities such as grazing, lopping, felling etc.    The following are the MPCAs identified.

Sl.

No.

Name of the MPCA

Name of  the Forest Division

Range

Village

District

Area in Ha.

1

Mallur

Warangal (N)

Eturnagaram

Mallur

Warangal

197

2

Sukkumamidi

Bhadrachalam (S)

Mariguda

Sukammaidi

Khammam

200

3

Maredumilli

Kakinada

Maredumilli

Maredumilli

East Godavari

260

4

Lankapakala

Narsipatnam

R.V.Nagaram

Lankapakala

Visakhapa-ntam

275

5

Corangi

Rajahmundry WLM

Corangi

Corangi

East Godavari

350

6

Peddacheruvu

Atmakur

Bairluty

Peddacheruvu

Kurnool

220

7

Kurli

Anantapur

Kadri

Kurli

Anantapur

313

8

Talakona

Chittoor(E)

Bakarapet

Talakona

Chittoor

200

 

 

 

 

 

Total

2015

The Forest Department made significant strides in the field of medicinal plants during the past 5 years.  The following are the highlights:   

 

a. 4 Ethno-botanical gardens with about 400 species were established in the 4 Regional Research Centers in the state located at Rajahmundry, Tirupathi, Mulugu near Hyderabad and Achuthapuram in Khammam District to create awareness on Medicinal Plants among the officials and staff of the department and the general public. Sample plots of different Medicinal plants are raised in these gardens.  The Ethno-botanical garden at Rajahmundry has an Arboretum too with various tree species collected and planted basing on Bentham and Hooker’s classification. The production of seed and seedlings of different species for utilization as planting material is also achieved in these gardens on a limited scale.  There is an enormous scope for increasing this activity.

b. The BIO-TRIM at Tirupathi has got fairly modern equipment to go in for a regular research work on various aspects including analysis of active principles and development of protocols for different species on production of tissue culture plants fairly in large number. 

c.  Field trials of different varieties have also been taken up to arrive at suitable variety for a given agro-climatic zone.    For these species which respond well for vegetative propagation CMA plots are raised in each of the Research Centers.    Already production of large number of Grafts and Clonal plants of tree species of medicinal value for planting throughout the state as a prelude to cultivation of herbs, shrubs and climbers of medicinal value, particularly by involving VSS is going on a large scale.

d. Small areas ranging from 0.5 ha to 2.00 ha were raised in many of the Forest Divisions of Andhra Pradesh with various species of medicinal plants on a trial basis.  Cultivation of such species has been successful and linkages with the local industries/traders had also been established for some species on a small scale. 

e. The Department has published a number brochures and books to popularize conservation of Medicinal Plants. Some of them are “A field guide on medicinal plants”, “A profile on dye yielding plants” and “Cultivation of medicinal and aromatic plants”.

 f. The Department has conducted Rapid Assessment Surveys (RAS) on occurrence of medicinal plants in all the three regions of the state followed by workshops at  Warangal, Rajahmundry and Tirupati to discuss different medicinal plants identified and the ailments for which they are used and preparation of databank of Medicinal plants available in the state.  As a result of Rapid Assessment Survey (RAS) data on The List of Medicinal Plants occurring in Nallamalai Hills in particular and in the entire State district-wise in general has been compiled.

              Improvement of Degraded Forest Lands:-

 These lands are having either sparse growth or totally no growth. Proper site preparation and adequate soil and moisture conservation works will be taken up for a better moisture regime and planting Medicinal plants is taken up. Grafts / Tall plants of tree species and herbs and shrubs are raised simultaneously. Mechanical supports will be given for the climbers planted.

Tree Species:- 

Emblica officinalis , Terminalia chebula, Terminalia  bellerica,   Terminalia arjuna , Syzygium  cuminii, Azadirachta indica , Tamrindus indica , Bixa orallena  ,  Sapindus emarginatus, Sterculia urens , Aegle marmelos

              

              Herbs and Climbers:

Withania somnifera (Ashwagandha), Cassia angustifolia (Senna), Coleus forskohlii (Pashanabhedi), Gymnema sylvestre (Podapatri), Tinospora cordifolia, Decalepis hamiltonii, Hemidesmus indicus, etc.

    

NMPB Projects under implementation:- The National Medicinal Plants Board (NMPB) has sanctioned 7 projects for improvement of Medicinal Plants in Andhra Pradesh with an amount of Rs.1.50 Crores  for implementation Forest Range Officer a period of 3 years from 2002-05.  The projects are as follows:

Sl. No

Description of Work

Sanctioned amount Rs. In Lakhs

PP No.

NMPB

1

Project on Research and Development 

25

5/2002

2

Project on In situ conservation

25

6/2002

3

Project on Production of quality planting material

25

7/2002

4

Project on Ex situ cultivation

25

8/2002

5

Project on Market study

10

9/2002

6

Project on Extension activities

25

10/2002

7

Potentiality of Medicinal plants in diff rain fed eco- regions and their organic cultivation of Sustainability in AP.

20

11/2002

 

Total:

155.00

 

 

Regeneration of over harvested Red listed/ Endangered Medicinal Plants in the Natural Habitat

 

The Forest Dept has made an effort in replacing the Globally Endangered and Over Harvested medicinal plant Decalepis hamiltonii (Maredugaddalu / Maredukommulu / Nannari / Barre sugandhapala) in the natural forest areas.  About 190 Kgs of the seed was collected and 12 lakh bag plants were raised in 17 divisions and planted in the natural habitat.

  Formation of Medicinal Plant Cell: For providing latest information regarding conservation, cultivation, value addition and marketing of medicinal plants and for coordination with field level officers, VSS members, different herbal extraction companies and traders, Medicinal plant Cell was constituted in the office of the Prl. Chief Conservator of Forests, Hyderabad, Contact No: 98492 66245 & 040 24652424 / Ext : 304 (Dy_CF (Prod))

The following are the contact persons in the field of Medicinal Plants: 

Chief Conservator of Forests (Research), Hyderabad.

PhoneNo.9440810148, email:puramsrao@yahoo.co.in

Conservator of Forests (R&D) Circle, Hyderabad. Contact No. 040 24650099, Cell : 9440810024

 

 

Forest Geneticist, Warangal, Contact No. 0870-2431762

State Silviculturist, Rajahmundry. Contact No. 0883 2442813.

 

 

State Silviculturist, Hyderabad. Contact No.08418 - 232844.

State Silviculturist, Tirupati. 0877 2280602.

 

 

Dy. Conservator of Forests (Prod), Hyderabad. Contact No. 98492 66245 & 040 24650147.

email: dcfpmp@rediffmail.com