Documentation of Edible Flowers of Western Assam

Background: Western Assam are located at the extreme western part of Assam it extends from 89049/20// E to 91048/16// longitude and 25027/ N to 260 54// latitude covering the lower Brahmaputra valley. Western Assam is very unique in its bio resources and is inhibited by different Tribes and Communities. The people of this region use various plant items including leaves and tender shoot, flowers of some species which are often seen to be consumed in different forms like fried, curry form or even eaten raw. Besides using edible items these flowers are also used sometimes as a medicine for curing various diseases. Some of these flowers are also seen to be sold in local markets of various parts of Western Assam including Guwahati city for their high demand. Most of these flowers also eaten all over North East India by different tribes. Objectives: The objective of the present study is to document the plant species used by various communities of Western Assam as an edible flower. This work is very significant because documenting the indigenous knowledge through ethno-botanical studies are necessary for conservation of biological resources as well as their sustainable utilization. Method: In the study data was collected by field visit in various remote villages and by visiting the local markets of Western Assam. The present research work was conducted during the year on January 2012- June 2014. The present study provides information on their scientific name, family, vernacular name, habit, biological status, time of flowering, mode of preparation, medicinal properties and as well as market value. Result and conclusion: A total of 35 species of 31 genera belonging to 23 families of edible flowers have been recorded from the study area. There is enormous potential for the use of such edible flowers which bear specific medicinal properties for which there is tremendous demand even in global level.

Author(s): Kishor Deka and Namita Nath

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