This study aimed to document information on the use, conservation and threats to medicinal plants in Cheha district, Guraghe Zone, Southern Ethiopia. Thirty informants were randomly selected from four kebeles. Of which, 10 key informants were selected purposively by criteria of age, gender and indigenous knowledge. Ethnobotanical data was collected through semi-structured interview, guided field observation and group discussion. Data was analyzed with descriptive statistics and expressed with frequency distribution, percentage and flow charts. A total of 58 medicinal plant species (17 wild, 38 home garden and 3 species from both) were recorded and a total of 37, 3 and 18 species were reported as being used to treat human, livestock and both ailments, respectively. The major habit of the medicinal plants were herbs (58.62%) followed by trees (24.13%), shrubs (10.34%), and climbers (6.89%). The most frequently harvested plant parts were leaves (36.20%) followed by seed (13.79%), fruit (12.06%) and others. Most of the remedies are prepared from single plant with various preparation methods and administered via oral, dermal, topical and nasal method. The major threats to medicinal plants in the study area are agricultural expansion, deforestation, firewood and charcoal production and over utilization, respectively. The data analysis result reveals that the community is better experiencing ex-situ conservation indigenously, but to ensure sustainability of medicinal plants; more emphasis should be given to the traditional medicine and indigenous knowledge and skill of herbalists must be encouraged, documented and supported with scientific approaches.
Key words: Ethnobotany, indigenous knowledge, medicinal plant, traditional medicine.