Plants have been used as a source of traditional medicine in Ethiopia. However, this valuable ethnobotanical knowledge is not formally documented and thus the objective of this study was to investigate ethno-medicinal plants, their preparation and application in treating ailments in humans and livestock in the boricha district of Sidama Zone, Ethiopia. Forty two traditional healers (37 male and 5 female) of different ages (30–80 years) were purposively and randomly selected with the help of local elders, agricultural office workers and administrative personnel. Prior to the interview process, discussions was held with the informants through assistance of local elders to clarify the purpose of the study and build confidence of the respondents to provide reliable information without suspicion and were asked to provide information on plant(s) use against any kind of illness in humans and livestock. Forty two plant species belonging to 29 families and 35 genera were documented. Of the 42 species, 33% were trees, 45% shrubs, 17% herbs and 5% climbers. Leaves were the most utilized plant part (62%), followed by stem bark (19%) and seed (12%). The routes of administration are mainly internal in which oral administration is the common one. Informants Consensus Factor indicated that clustered numbers of plant species used for treatment of ailments such as febrile illness, sudden sickness and headache (11 species) followed by skin, eye infection and ecto-parasite related (7 species), glandular swelling and cancer related problems (6 species). Based on the finding, Informants claimed that fresh forms of the preparations were considered more powerful than dried ones to treat the ailments in humans and livestock and oral administration of prepared medicine were the common one.
Key words: Boricha, ethnobotany, informant consensus factor, medicinal plants, traditional knowledge.
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