The Journal of Biodiversity and Environmental Sciences JBES on September 26, 2018 posted an enlightening article on herbal medicine as practiced in North-Africa.  This story is about Ethnobotany of medicinal plants as practised in Mascara, a large agricultural region, 400 kilometers west of the capital city Algiers.  An abstract and introduction of the study are proposed as Ethnobotany of medicinal plants in Mascara, Algeria..

Ethnobotany of medicinal plants in the region Béni Chougrane, Mascara, Algeria

By: Marouf Baghdad


This herbal study was conducted in the Mascara region (Beni Chougrane), whose population is closely linked to the various natural resources. our study is to provide a floristic inventory of medicinal plants and to collect information concerning the uses Therapeutic made in said region. The results of our study have identified 72 medicinal species used by local people in traditional medicine, owned 38 families, the most common used: Lamiaceae, Apiaceae and Asteraceae, and we established a herbarium sheets for each plant. Thus, it had been found the modes used in the form of decoction and infusion. The results also showed that medicinal plants are used in the following diseases: hypertension and diabetes.

Author Information:

Marouf Baghdad, Meddah Boumediene, Anteur Djamel, Baghdadi Djilali

  • Search Laboratory Biological Systems and Geomatics. University of Mascara, Algeria
  • Geomatics laboratory and sustainable development (LGEO2D), University of Ibn Khaldoun, Tiaret, Algeria
  • University of Abdelhamid Ben Badis, Mostaganem, Algeria



The use of medicinal plants in therapy knows notable interest, and it is through scientific studies based on analytical methods, and the new experiments, the medical world discovers more, the well-founded empirical prescriptions of medicinal plants. These last constitute an inexhaustible source of drugs for men (Handa et al., 2006).

Algeria, by the richness and diversity of its flora, constitutes a real phylogenetic tank, with about 4000 species and sub-species of vascular plants, which allows it to occupy a privileged square among the Mediterranean countries that have a long medical tradition and traditional know-how in herbal medicine (Righi, 2008).

The importance of medicinal plants in Algeria is so undeniable that is why, high request national and international medicinal plants, the use and lawless harvesting constitute a real danger for the future of medicinal plants if any species plantation policy is not applied.  However, the Algerian medicinal flora remains unknown until today, because of some thousands of plant species, counted medicinal species do not exceed a few tens.

Analysis of the Algerian medicinal bibliography shows that data relating to regional medicinal plants are very partial and dispersed.  Similarly, knowledge making is held currently by few people.  Also, the expedited destruction especially by natural drought and human activities, makes it more difficult to discover, the exploitation and backup of the potentialities of this type.

Indeed, traditional medicine has always occupied an important place in the traditions of medications in Algeria especially in mountainous and Saharan areas. The study conducted in the municipalities of Mascara, responds to this concern by bringing documentation for medicinal plants.

Through a series of surveys in ethnobotany, radiotherapists in the Mascara region were interviewed, the information sought on the used plants focused on their local name, their therapies virtues and all related medical practice.

Thus, a floristic inventory was performed on four protected sites.  It is very important to translate and reflect knowledge in scientific knowledge to revalue it, keep and use rationally our ethnobotanical study as a contribution to the identification of medicinal plants used by the local population in the Mascara region and the identification of ways of use in traditional Algerian pharmacopoeia.

Materiel and methods

The mountains of Beni Chougrane are one of the links of the western Tell oriented South-West/ North-East, bounded as the east valley of Mina separates them from the mountain of Ouarsenis.  West, they are extended by the mountains of Tessala et Ouled Ali.  North, they are bordered by the plain of the Habra-Sig and South, by Ghriss-Mascara.  In most part of the valley of Mina which marks the limit is valley of Mebtouh, which marks the western limit, the Beni Chougrane mountains are crossed by valley El Hammam, which are built 3 large dams-tanks.  The total acreage of the Bneder in 1981 was 2,860 km².  The agricultural acreage represents 35% of this total area, course and forests account for 27% and 20 % (heavy degraded) unproductive lands.

The intervention is to identify plants of a region and to realize an herbarium, also from well know its distribution and ecological conditions of this vegetation.

Our objective is to know the traditional use of plants used by the population of semiarid as a remedy so to traditional knowledge.  It is also to know the traditional use of our inventory mostly at the time of survey, the lack of means of transport.

Read more on the original document: Ethnobotany of medicinal plants in the region Béni chougrane (Mascara, Algeria)

Related post:  Genetic diversity in some euphrates poplar (Populus euphratica O.) ecotypes in Iran using microsatellites (SSRs) markers — JBES

Journal name: Journal of Biodiversity and Environmental Sciences (JBES)

Published by: International Network for Natural Sciences

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