Flora of Pakistan

Pakistan Related Articles and other Gardening related Info.

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Farhan Ahmed
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Flora of Pakistan

Post by Farhan Ahmed » February 23rd, 2013, 10:08 pm

There is lately a demand arising of creating a database of flora of Pakistan. There are various considerations for creating such a database. Though We are trying to introduce such database but its modalities are under consideration as the "Script of Phpbb" offers fewer tools to compile effective database.

Second considerations is "Re-inventing the wheel". Many horticulturist(both foreign and local) have undertaken such works, their work is assessable(Which i would be sharing here), therefore is there a need to re-invent the wheel and undertake such a mammoth task, whereas Members of this forum are hobbyist with no formal education in the field and limited time. Such studies require extensive field work. And alas i am yet to see people taking tiniest of initiative. A prize orientated photo competition has six entries in a month............Do i need to say more.

Third consideration is that most plants people are interested in, are non-endemic, rather naturalized.. Most endemic plants, are of no ornamental value to hobbyist/Gardeners. Moreover it requires great command over the subject to be able to differentiate/classify naturalized from endemic.

We have already shared comprehensive resources regarding Trees of Pakistan as well as weeds. We are almost finished with "Grasses & Shrubs". But while preparing these incomplete lists, i thought many a times, what is the use of these posts while these plants hold no ornamental value to a home gardener. Any how......

Here i would be sharing some good work already under taken regarding flora of Pakistan. However, the issue remains, these books though very comprehensive are mostly descriptive(non-pictorial/lesser pictures). And are we really willing to READ......however searching an image if you know the specie name is a non issue, if someone is really interested.


Flora of Lahore District
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwErh93 ... sp=sharing

Plants of Punjab
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwErh93 ... sp=sharing

Beautiful Flowers of Kashmir
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwErh93 ... sp=sharing

Handbook of Flora of India Vol.1
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwErh93 ... sp=sharing

Trees of Pakistan
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwErh93 ... sp=sharing

Shares by Khabbab

Encyclopedia of Shrubs and Perennial(naturalized)
http://www.lahoregardening.com/2011/04/ ... ls_29.html

Encyclopedia of Climbers/Vines(naturalized)
http://www.lahoregardening.com/2011/05/ ... mbers.html

Encyclopedia of Trees(naturalized)
http://www.lahoregardening.com/2011/03/ ... trees.html

Flowers of Murree and Nathia gali
http://www.lahoregardening.com/2011/06/ ... -gali.html
http://www.lahoregardening.com/2011/06/ ... legia.html
http://www.lahoregardening.com/2012/02/ ... track.html

rafique
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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by rafique » February 23rd, 2013, 10:43 pm

Thanks you Farhan for adding another reference.
It is useful and would be more in future. As a recent example , few days ago some one asked me about some information for the plantation of trees
with speciality to attract the butter flies and bees. I gave the reference of this information on this forum and khabab,s blog. Both of them proved really help ful. In future people would get more out it. its a begining. There are alost of people who love and appreciate nature here in Pakistan...........

Once again i am thank ful to all those managing this great task.

your efforts would not be fruitless.


Regards
Rafique

M Farooq
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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by M Farooq » February 24th, 2013, 8:29 am

Thanks Farhan for your collection and you have rightly identified the key issues. I would like to address some of your points which you raised:


1. Though We are trying to introduce such database but its modalities are under consideration as the "Script of Phpbb" offers fewer tools to compile effective database

I think this is the most feasible approach. Could you share what type of challenges (monetary/ or human resource/ or time) are there in going through the above mentioned path? Some computer gurus can have their input here.

2. "Re-inventing the wheel". Many horticulturist(both foreign and local) have undertaken such works, their work is assessable(Which i would be sharing here), therefore is there a need to re-invent the wheel and undertake such a mammoth task, whereas Members of this forum are hobbyist with no formal education in the field

You rightly recognized that our audience is different. They are not professional botants but hobbyists. I like your efforts in collecting the flora books-but those boooks are for the botanists including the forest trees of Pakistan. Therefore the question of re-inventing the wheel does not arise when we say that a list be maintained. Imagine that there are hundreds of textbooks on the same subject. Are they re-inventing the wheel? No because each textbook serves a different audience. Therefore when I suggested maintaining a list of pictures+ flowers names (we don't know where but lets assume we had way to do that), it was highly targeted at ornamental garden plants of Pakistan. Those plants may be endemic or imported. For the time being let us not bother about what plants are growing in Pakistan's jungles or mountains.

As you may noticed in the books, there are no photographs, because photographs are scientifically useless in botany. They always emphasize schematic diagrams or highly specialized jargon. For us, photographs are the typical way to identify and compare. So for amateurs, something along the lines of "Flowers of India" will be the most appropiate way.

3. Third consideration is that most plants people are interested in, are non-endemic, rather naturalized.. Most endemic plants, are of no ornamental value to hobbyist/Gardeners. Moreover it requires great command over the subject to be able to differentiate/classify naturalized from endemic.

You are right for the time being nobody in interested in thousands of trees and plants. I think our focus should only be on ornamental plants that are found commonly in Pakistani gardens.

It is not our job to compile and list each and every plant that grows here. Such recent and specialized work has already been done by Dr. Irtefaq Ali of Karachi University along with the present sitting VC of KU. His books are called "Flora of Pakistan" - not pictures at all just botanical jargon there. So lets focus only on ornamental trees and plants. That will make our task way easier than currently anticipated.

Regards,
Farooq

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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by Munir » February 24th, 2013, 8:47 am

I agree with Farooq ( without disagreeing with Farhan).Here on this Forum, we are catering for the needs of Hobbyists/amateur gardeners & should be focussing on promoting home gardening, rather than the advanced technical aspects related to research.

Farhan Ahmed
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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by Farhan Ahmed » February 24th, 2013, 9:16 am

Please do it then.. Looking forward to it anxiously!

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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by Munir » February 24th, 2013, 9:38 am

Please don't get touchy.I have observed in the short association with the Forum that you are the maximum contributor or in a way the prime mover,duly acknowledged & appreciated by all. We look to you for a continued leading role.
Last edited by Munir on February 24th, 2013, 9:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

M Farooq
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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by M Farooq » February 24th, 2013, 9:53 am

I think everyone appreciates your enthusiatic contributions and no one is attempting to diminish that role. There is a nice saying in Latin De gustibus non est disputandum which simply means that there should be no disputes regarding tastes.

Everyone has his/her own perspective...and perhaps that is why we use public forums to discuss different opinions and suggestions as a way to educate ourselves.

No hard feelings please because that was never the intention of the discussion. A fauji salute for you!

Regards,

Farooq

Farhan Ahmed
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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by Farhan Ahmed » February 24th, 2013, 2:25 pm

There is no bad blood in any way and there is no reason for it being there.

we should start doing something if we plan to go somewhere. As already said we are open to provide any sort of help, tell me what to do and i will try my best, But its your suggestion, your input, so we need some guidance. Take charge!!!!

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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by M Farooq » February 24th, 2013, 10:37 pm

farhan137 wrote: we should start doing something if we plan to go somewhere. As already said we are open to provide any sort of help, tell me what to do and i will try my best, But its your suggestion, your input, so we need some guidance. Take charge!!!!
Thanks for your support. The idea was quite simple, lets make a Word file with two columns, plants name: picture(s). The current had about 50 plants in so far- all garden plants of Pakistan. The suggestion was that people can volutnarily send pictures at flora.pakistan2013@gmail.com with a name (if they happen to know) and I would accomadate in that file after confirming the name from Google. We could then upload a montly update of the pdf version here. That all depends on the interest of the members. Given the low participation in your "Photo Contest" despite so many incentives and big gifts, I am not overly optmimistic.

The problem is that I am not in the country for another year due to my research work otherwise I would have collected pictures of the local plants myself- my reliance is solely on google images.

What is your say about it? As they say "Where there is a will, there is a way"

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Re: Flora of Pakistan

Post by KBW » March 11th, 2013, 9:18 pm

farhan137 wrote:Third consideration is that most plants people are interested in, are non-endemic, rather naturalized.. Most endemic plants, are of no ornamental value to hobbyist/Gardeners. Moreover it requires great command over the subject to be able to differentiate/classify naturalized from endemic.
I would say there is a large number of endemic plants which are very ornamental. It includes a large variety of bulbs (hundreds of them), ferns, ornamental alpine rock plant, flowering bushes / trees, palms, succulents, cacti and all. Those who have been to Deosai/Northern Areas in Aug or to Cholistan / Thar in Mar/Apr or to the rugged mountain of Balochistan in Apr/May would know what I am talking about. The most beautiful Iris that I ever saw grew near an isoalted lake over 10000 feet which took me 5 hours to climb from the road. It was just growning there, in hundreds. One would find numerous species of tulips, crocus, hycinths, fretillerias, campanulas, oxalis, primulas, gladiolus, narcissus, jonquils, alliums, bauhinias, saxifragas, echiverias what and what not. Many bulbs that we cherish so much nowadays...... their grandparents were taken from our mountaineous areas a long time back.

Problem is that our botanists and horticulturists mostly like to stay road bound and very few of these plants grow near the roads. That is why many of us don't ever come to know what grows in our country. And perhaps it is far too easy to import hybrids from abroad instead of cultivating the local plants which are normally found in the far flung areas and at the end, may not be commercially that viable being "desi". Many nursery wallas have however realised the potential that our wilderness offers and are minting money by taking out grown up bushes and plants from the wild. At one place, I saw Chamaerops Palms growning in thousands. These were very large size specimens which were obviously very old. Next year when I went there, hundreds of them were gone and there were people skillfully making large size "gachis" to take out the grown up palms. At another place, a local digging bulbs / corms from the rocks told me that some foreigner buys these from him in good money and sends abroad. In another area a large clump of fan palms disappeared and was sold in the nurseries. Various varieties of Phoenix Palm, including Phoenix dactylifera (edible date) have been taken out from the wild and used in landscaping. So much for native plants :(

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