Table of Contents
ISRN Biodiversity
Volume 2013, Article ID 124103, 11 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/124103
Research Article

Status, Diversity, and Traditional Uses of Homestead Gardens in Northern Bangladesh: A Means of Sustainable Biodiversity Conservation

Bangladesh Institute of Social Research (BISR), Hasina De Palace, House No. 6/14, Block No. A, Lalmatia, Dhaka 1207, Bangladesh

Received 29 March 2013; Accepted 26 May 2013

Academic Editors: I. Bisht and H. Ford

Copyright © 2013 Bishwajit Roy et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

A study was conducted to assess the status, ecological diversity, traditional uses, spatial arrangement, and importance of homestead garden for biodiversity conservation of the urban and rural households in Kishoreganj Sadar of northern Bangladesh. Assessment was done by means of multistage random sampling from a total of 80 households using a semistructured questionnaire. A total of 62 plant species belonging to 36 families including 5 threatened species were identified. The majority of the species were used as fruit and food (45%) followed by medicinal plants (38.71%), firewood (32.26%), and timber (29%). Ecological diversity indices indicated that the existing plant species in the homestead gardens in the study area have moderately high biodiversity and species richness. Farmers perceived importance for homestead plant species conservation was for fruit and food (85%) followed by building materials (78.75%), subsistence family income (73.75%), and source of firewood (68.75%). In addition, analysis of existing management regime indicates that growers lack scientific information, almost every household still follows traditional management systems. Finally, a specific homestead forest management plan, conservation of homestead species diversity through scientific management and obtaining training and support from government and NGOs, was found highly demandable by this study.