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Floral diversity of Panchalingeshwar: A sacred hill of Odisha, India


Sacred hills are the repository of important plant germplasm resources, which need special attention from the conservation point of view. The Panchalingeshwar hill at Balasore district of Odisha is enriched with various plant species that are economically, medicinally and commercially important. The aim of the present study is to document the plant species diversity of Panchalingeshwar hill and classify them into different life forms for studying the biological spectrum of the hill. A total of 204 plant species belonging to 174 genera and 60 families were documented, among which Fabaceae (27 species) was the most specious family followed by Poaceae (15 species), Apocynaceae (12 species), Malvaceae (12 species), Asteraceae (11 species) etc. Biological spectrum study revealed that Phanerophytes was the dominant life form accounting for 42.15% (86 species) of all species in the area, followed by Therophytes 36.27% (74 species), Chamaephytes 12.25% (25 species), Hemicryptophytes 5.39% (11 species), and Cryptophytes 3.92% (8 species). Biotic interference and invasion of alien weed species played a negative role on the native species of the area. Therefore, it is suggested to conserve and protect this sacred hill prior to local extinction of the important species.


Biotic interference, conservation, floristic diversity, life forms, Panchalingeshwar hill



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