Neduvoto Piniel Mollel, Joseph Nicolao Otieno and Daniel Kambei Sitoni
Background: Article presents harvest cites and taxonomic diversity of plant species traded in fast growing Arusha city to facilitate traceability and sustainable conservation
Methods: Ethno-botanical information was collected through semi-structured interviews while confirmatory field surveys covered reported harvest forests. Ethnobotanical information was analyzed using Use-Value (UV) and Relative Frequency of Citation (RFC) indices.
Results: A total of 147 plant species in 116 genera and 54 families were recorded. The most represented families were Fabaceae with 21 (14%) species, Asteraceae 10 (6.8%) and Euphorbiacea 8 (5.2%). Highest UV were for Warburgia ugandensis (0.26), Prunus africana (0.22) and Rauvolfia caffra (0.2). Aloe secundiflora and Lannea schweinfurthii recorded highest RFC (0.92 each). Though village forests supplied most of herbals in Arusha markets, state forests were encroached for rare plants.
Conclusion: Village forests though degraded are major sources of herbal materials in Arusha markets. Sustainable utilization is recommended for economic and ecological resilience