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Techniques for Collecting and Processing Plant Material and Their Application in Ethnobotany Research

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Methods and Techniques in Ethnobiology and Ethnoecology


Until they are incorporated into an herbarium, the sampling of plant species and every process involved in their collection are key steps in many areas of botany. When sampling processes are performed properly, they provide information well beyond a plant’s scientific name; these processes also emphasize the local importance and conservation status of the species and its significance in different environments. Showing plants in situ, fresh parts or even plant parts in small voucher specimens are becoming increasingly common tools in ethnobotany because the goal is to obtain information and rescue the use of particular plants by traditional communities. Therefore, visualization of the plant sample is critical for ensuring that both the researcher and the community member are referring to the same plant. In this chapter, we will discuss the common techniques of sampling, preserving, and processing plant material as essential tools for basic field procedures and their relevance and applications in methods that assist in ethnobotany research.

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The authors thank Dr. Luiz Vital Fernandes Cruz da Cunha and Simone Santos Lira Silva, M.Sc. for providing a number of the cited studies and Alyson Luiz Santos de Almeida, M.Sc. for Fig. 5a, d.

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dos Santos, L.L., Vieira, F.J., de Sousa Nascimento, L.G., da Silva, A.C.O., dos Santos, L.L., de Sousa, G.M. (2014). Techniques for Collecting and Processing Plant Material and Their Application in Ethnobotany Research. In: Albuquerque, U., Cruz da Cunha, L., de Lucena, R., Alves, R. (eds) Methods and Techniques in Ethnobiology and Ethnoecology. Springer Protocols Handbooks. Humana Press, New York, NY.

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  • Print ISBN: 978-1-4614-8635-0

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