Mauritius and the Islands of the Indian Ocean are known to be a biodiversity hotspot. Many of the plants making up the local flora are endemic and exist there and nowhere else in the world.
This rich flora, comprising both exotic and endemic species, has amongst others been used as ornamental and medicinal. However, in spite of these applications, they remain unknown to the public at large. It is also a fact that the flora of island states, in general, is threatened. Conservation efforts will only be successful if the public at large is made aware of the potential of these plants and learn to appreciate their values as well as their vulnerability.
This book has been designed to help the amateur identify the plants of Mauritius and Indian Ocean Islands and appreciate their value. Each plant monograph gives the common name, a short botanical description, the origin and habitat of the plant as well as the etymology of the plant name. Icons have been inserted in the text so as to further facilitate the reader in appreciating the potential values of these plants. Over 700 photos illustrate some 400 plants used for many diverse applications.
Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, PhD is presently the Managing Director of the Centre for Phytotherapy Research (CEPHYR). She has authored several books on Medicinal Plants and on the flora of Mauritius and Africa. In 2010, she also co-authored the African Herbal Pharmacopoeia.
Elected Fellow to the African, lslamic Academies of Science and the Linnean Society of London, she has received several international scientific prizes namely the l'Oreal-Unesco Prize for Women in Science (2007), the Special “Woman Professionals in Science” Prize of the CTA/NEPAD/RU FORUM/AG RA/ATPS/FARA (2009); the African Union ‘Woman in Science‘ Prize (2009). In 2013, she received the Honorary Doctorate from the Universite Pierre Marie Curie (Sorbonne Universites).