The history of taxonomical studies on flora of Nepal dated back to more than 200 years. The early taxonomical studies of Nepalese plants were carried out by the Europeans mainly by the British botanists. As a result of which the first book on flora of Nepal 'Prodromus Florae Nepalensis' was prepared in 1825 by David Don. Although a few but notably important due to pioneer work of its kind on Nepalese flowering plants, taxonomical works on Nepalese plants were published from 1802 to 1947. Since 1949 many British, Japanese and Indian expeditions carried out plant explorations in Nepal and published many important findings. Many important works on Nepalese flowering plants were published between 1949 and 1982, especially three volumes of 'An Enumeration of flowering plants of Nepal' in 1978-1982 by Hara et al. Even after this publication many plant collecting expeditions in Nepal were carried out especially by the Japanese botanists. Researches carried out in the Central Department of Botany (Tribhuvan University, Nepal), University of Tokyo (Japan) and University of Edinburgh (U K.) for M. Sc. and Ph. D. degrees are noteworthy. Studies on the flowering plants are still continuing and newly discovered species and new records for flora of Nepal are being added.
The Government of Nepal established the Department of Plant Resources (then Department of Medicinal Plants) in 1961 to contribution flora of Nepal by carrying out botanical explorations of Nepal and establishing a National Herbarium and also published regional floras and fascicles on Nepalese plants. Publication of a comprehensive flora had been realized in the early nineties to record all the collections made during varius expeditions. In this context, the Department of Plant Resources organized the first national workshop for the Flora of Nepal in1995. The first international editorial meeting of the Nepal Flora Project was held in the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (U K.) in 2002. The meeting proposed to publish flora of Nepal in ten volumes. After 15 years the T" international editorial meeting of Flora of Nepal was held in 2017 with one published volume of flora of Nepal (volume 3 published in 2011) as its progress.
A historical sketch of the taxonomical works carried out on the flowering plants of Nepal is needed to know the development of the studies so as to understand the diversity and status of these plants and to help for the preparation of flora of Nepal. In this book references published on the taxonomical studies of Nepal are provided, the flowering plant diversity of Nepal is presented and the recent activities on the preparation offlora of Nepal are noted.
I express my sincere thanks to Dr. Keshab Raj Rajbhandari, former Scientific Officer of this Department, Mr. Sanjeev Kumar Rai, Deputy Director General, Mr. Ganga Datt Bhatt, Ms. Rita Chhetri Assistant Research Officers and Mr. Subhash Khatri, Scientific Officer, of this Department for their painstaking efforts to prepare the manuscript of this book. I am thankful to Dr. Nirmala Joshi, Mr. Ramesh Basnet, Mr. Deepak Lamichhane, Prof. Dr. Ram Prasad Chaudhary, Prof. Dr. Krishna Kumar Shrestha, Prof. Dr. Devendra Bajracharya, Prof. Dr. Lokesh Ratna Shakya, Prof. Dr. Mohan Siwakoti, Prof. Dr. Sangeeta Rajbhandary, Dr. Bhaskar Adhikari, Dr. Bhakta Bahadur Raskoti and Dr. Jyoti Prasad Gajurel for helping to get the references. I am grateful to Dr. Mark F. Watson of the Royal Botanical Garden Edinburgh, Scotland, U K. and Dr. Hiroshi Ikeda of the University of Tokyo, Japan, for their suggestions to improve the manuscript. I would like to thank all staff of the National Herbarium and Plant Laboratories for their help in preparing this book.
Nepal is considered as a crossroad of plant migration in the Himalayan region, overlapping between eastern and western Himalayan elements and so the floral diversity of Nepal is very rich. The estimated number of flowering plants in Nepal is about 6500 species (Steam, 1978). The history of taxonomical studies on flora of Nepal can be traced back to more than 200 years (Rajbhandari, 1976, 2002a, 2016). The early taxonomical studies of Nepalese plants were carried out by the Europeans mainly by the British botanists. As a result the first book on flora of Nepal 'Prodromus Florae Nepalensis' was prepared in 1825 by David Don based on the plants collected in Nepal by Buchanan Hamilton in 1802-1803 and Nathaniel Wallich in 1820-1821. A few taxonomical works on Nepalese plants were published between 1802 to 1947, however these were very important due to pioneer works on the Nepalese flowering plants. Many British, Japanese and Indian expeditions carried out plant explorations in Nepal since 1949 and published many important findings in the journals and various bulletins and in the book forms. The Government of Nepal established the Department of Plant Resources in 1961 to contribute on flora of Nepal by carrying out botanical explorations of Nepal. The Department also established a National Herbarium and the botanists there published some regional floras and fascicles on Nepalese plants. Many important works on Nepalese flowering plants were published between 1949 to 1982, especially three volumes of 'An Enumeration of flowering plants of Nepal' in 1978-1982 by Hara et all Even after this publication many plant collecting expeditions in Nepal were carried out especially by the Japanese botanists. Researches carried out in the Central Department of Botany of the Tribhuvan University, Nepal, the University of Tokyo, Japan and the University of Edinburgh, U. K. for M. Sc. and Ph. D. degrees are noteworthy. Studies on the flowering plants are ongoing and many new species for Nepal and the World are being discovered as additions for the flora of Nepal. A large number of taxonomical studies on the flowering plants of Nepal have been carried out by now. The objective of this book is to make a historical sketch of the taxonomical works carried out on the flowering plants of Nepal to show the development of the published articles and books available for the Nepalese flowering plant studies so as to understand the diversity and status of these plants and to help preparing the Flora of Nepal.
The present status of the flowering plant diversity of Nepal shows that there are 5309 species under 1515 genera and 193 families. The most diversified family is Poaceae (126 genera and 406 species) followed by Asteraceae (118 genera and 394 species), Orchidaceae (96 genera and 381 species) and Fabaceae (93 genera and 28 I species). The most diversified genera in the flora of Nepal are Carex (110 species), Saxifraga (87 species), Pedicularis (66 species) and Primula (61 species). 246 flowering plants have Nepal in species, subspecies and variety names in the form of nepalensis, nepalense, nepalica, napaulensis, napaulense, napalensis and nipaulensis. Tn the same way 88 species contain place, mountain and river names of Nepal as scientific names and about 23 names are honoured with Nepalese persons. There are 312 endemic species of flowering plants of Nepal which are categorised under 126 genera and 46 families. 12 plant families have 10 or more than 10 endemic flowering plant species. Among them the families having large number of endemic species are Apiaceae (28 species), Asteraceae (22 species), Fabaceae (2 I species), Saxifragaceae (21 specie ), Papaveraceae (20 species), Orchidaceae (17 species), Ranunculaceae (17 species) and Poaceae (16 species). 16 genera have 5 or more than 5 species of endemic flowering plant species. The genera having large number of endemic plants are Saxifraga (21 species), Pedicularis (13 species), Meconopsis (11species) and Impatiens (10 species). They are all much diversified high altitude plants.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
Item Code: NAP808 Author: Keshab Raj Rajbhandari & Sanjeev Kumar Rai Cover: HARDCOVER Edition: 2017 Publisher: Department of Plant Resources Kathmandu, Nepal ISBN: 9789937031486 Language: English Size: 10.00 X 7.50 inch Pages: 448 (151 Color Illustrations) Other Details: Weight of the Book: 1.3 Kg
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