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Ishan Shikarkhane, Zainulabdeen Sayeed, Suyash Shinde

This report is about the various plants in our ecosystem and their properties
and how they are useful to us.


Trees in India known for their grandeur and majesty are like the green pearl in the Indian
crown. Trees occupy the important place in the history of India. Nature has blessed us with
almost an infinite variety of plant species, all with some or the other aesthetic value. Rarely
does one get time these days to think and study about the plant life that surrounds us. Its now
high time that we realise how intense it is to cut a tree and how devastating it can be, if
trees cease to exist. Plants have been classified into three main categories: the TREES, the
SHRUBS and the HERBS. Together these account for the plant kingdom. In the project report to follow, it
has been attempted to describe certain important members of this vast family, which
would certainly be an encouragement for the readers to continue with their endeavour.


Plants are one of the two groups into which all living things were traditionally divided. the term "plant" implies an association with certain traits. which gives them their green colour. a branch of biology. The division goes back at least as far as Aristotle (384 BC – 322 BC) who distinguished between plants which generally do not move. and the fungi and several groups of algae were removed to new kingdoms. and having the ability to carry out photosynthesis. and an alternation of generations. Some plants are parasitic and have lost the ability to produce normal amounts of chlorophyll or to photosynthesize. are seed plants (see the table below). Precise numbers are difficult to determine. Much later. these organisms are still often considered plants. Plants serve as ornaments and. Their scientific study is known as botany. the other is animals. it has become clear that the plant kingdom as originally defined included several unrelated groups. but as of 2010. 3 . However. and have been domesticated for millennia. such as being multi cellular. Green plants provide most of the world's molecular oxygen and are the basis of most of the earth's ecologies. especially on land. modular and indeterminate growth. particularly in popular contexts. are living multi-cellular organisms of the kingdom Plantae. also called green plants . Plants described as grains. there are thought to be 300–315 thousand species of plants. Outside of formal scientific contexts. when Linnaeus (1707–1778) created the basis of the modern system of scientific classification. they have served as the source of most medicines and drugs. Since then. Plants are also characterized by sexual reproduction. some 260–290 thousand.INTRODUCTION Plants. until recently and in great variety. of which the great majority. possessing cellulose. and animals which often are mobile to catch their food. Green plants have cell walls with cellulose and characteristically obtain most of their energy from sunlight via photosynthesis using chlorophyll contained in chloroplasts. although asexual reproduction is common. fruits and vegetables form mankind's basic foodstuffs. these two groups became the kingdoms Vegetabilia (later Metaphyta or Plantae) and Animalia.

4 .  Are structurally organized. such as—water (H 2O). hydrogen.  Grow (increase in size or weight).  Are made principally of four elements— carbon.  React to stimuli and respond. thereby adapting to their environment.  Have genes. ammonia (NH 3) and a host of others. nitrogen— which were most abundant when the first life appeared eons ago on an early Earth. sequences of deoxyribonucleic acid ( DNA) that carry the instructions for the organization and functioning of the organism. carbon dioxide (CO 2). producing offspring that insure the continuity of the genetic code from generation to generation. the smallest units able to conduct the functions of living. Multi-cellular organisms build tissues (groups of similar cells that perform certain functions) and organs (structures formed of different tissues that act as a group to perform specialized functions).  Need energy to conduct their metabolism (all of the chemical processes occurring within their bodies). share basic characteristics.Characteristics of plants All living things.  Require materials from the environment to both build and maintain their bodies.   Reproduce. Evolve (change over time). They combine to form the familiar compounds associated with life. oxygen. despite differences in appearance and size. Organisms:  Are composed of cells. methane (CH 4).

plant cells in their meristematic tissues retain the ability to divide and grow throughout the life of the plant. supported by no reproductive gametophyte tissue. Plants are sedentary. immature sporophytes formed by a fusion of egg and sperm cells. In the life cycle of plants there is an alternation of generations in which two genetically different plant bodies alternate: a haploid gametophyte alternates with a diploid sporophyte. but have evolved myriad ways to obtain the materials they need for their metabolism and efficient ways to reproduce and distribute their genes while anchored in one place. in addition most plants have the following special plant characteristics: Plants can photosynthesize (capture light energy and make organic compounds from inorganic materials).Special characteristics of plants        A plant has all the features of organisms listed above and. which makes them different but not unique—a few other organisms also are photosynthetic. Plants have indeterminate growth. chemical compounds not directly needed for 5 . While animals reach a certain size and stop growing. Although lacking the nervous systems of animals. such as some algae and bacteria. Plants develop from embryos. plants react and adapt to environmental stimuli (with dramatic and surprising speed in some instances). unlike most animals. they also produce secondary metabolites.

Evolutionary innovation continued after the Devonian period. survival.200 million years ago. that land plants appeared. they have developed an elaborate system for obtaining. and by late Devonian times seeds had evolved. Evidence suggests that an algal scum formed on the land 1. around 420 million years ago. lycopods. Late Devonian plants had thereby reached a degree of sophistication that allowed them to form forests of tall trees. from the earliest algal mats.a. These began to diversify in the late Silurian Period. This chert preserved early plants in cellular detail.] However. especially in the environments in which they evolved. leaves and secondary wood. although the structures of communities changed. ferns to the complex gymnosperms and angiosperms of today. petrified in volcanic springs. which deter other plants. By the middle of the Devonian Period most of the features recognised in plants today are present.y. new evidence from the study of carbon isotope ratios in Precambrian rocks has suggested that complex photosynthetic plants developed on the earth over 1000 m. and retaining water for all their metabolic processes and reproductive needs. and animals from attacking or consuming the plants. The terrestrial plants of today have evolved with a dependence on water(inherited from their aquatic ancestors). using. around 450 million years ago. through bryophytes. Evolution of plants The evolution of plants has resulted in increasing levels of complexity. but it was not until the Ordovician Period. The groups which appeared earlier continue to thrive. and the fruits of their diversification are displayed in remarkable detail in an early Devonian fossil assemblage from the Rhynie chert. This 6 . including roots. fungi. moving. Most plant groups were relatively unscathed by the Permo-Triassic extinction event.

Plants usually rely on soil primarily for support and water (in quantitative terms). most plants use the energy in sunlight to convert carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. on the other hand. into simple sugars. phosphorus. potassium. The grasses. For the majority of plants to grow successfully they also require oxygen in the atmosphere and around their roots (soil gas) for respiration. Plants use oxygen and glucose (which may be produced from stored starch) to provide energy.) These sugars are then used as building blocks and form the main structural component of the plant. as well as many other groups. but also obtain compounds of nitrogen.may have set the scene for the evolution of flowering plants in the Triassic (~200 million years ago). magnesium and other elemental nutrients. and carnivorous plants supplement their nutrient requirements with insect prey that they capture. and often in other plant parts as well. Chlorophyll. which became important in the mid Tertiary. using oxygen dissolved in the surrounding water. plus water. a green-colored. magnesiumcontaining pigment is essential to this process. from around 40 million years ago. dry conditions of the tropics over the last 10 million years. Structure and Growth of Plants Most of the solid material in a plant is taken from the atmosphere. it is generally present in plant leaves. Epiphytic and lithophytes plants depend on air and nearby debris for nutrients. (Parasitic plants. use the resources of its host to grow.[30] Some plants grow as submerged aquatics. evolved new mechanisms of metabolism to survive the low CO2 and warm. and a few 7 . Through a process known as photosynthesis. which exploded in the Cretaceous and Tertiary. The latest major group of plants to evolve were the grasses.

Ganga plain. India covers more than 45. Indus plain.Western Himalayas. Assam. which account for 6 percent of the total plant species in the world . the Deccan. Due to the wide range of climatic conditions. out of which there are several species that are not found anywhere else. Eastern Himalayas. topology and environments in the country.specialized vascular in anoxic conditions. plants. India is divided into main eight floristic regions namely . the Malabar and the Andaman. There are more than 3000 officially documented plants in India that holds great medicinal potential. such as mangroves. Trees occupy the important place in the history of India. India comprises seven percent of world's flora. use of plants as a source of medicines has been the inherent part of life in India. Trees have always been 8 . can grow with their roots Flora in India The Flora of India is one of the richest of the world due to a wide range of climate.000 species of flora. Since ancient times. Plant Kingdom Trees in India known for their grandeur and majesty are like the green pearl in the Indian crown. It is thought there are over 15000 species of flowering plants in India. India holds rich variety of flora that no other country can boast of.

and Tulsi are some of the plants that holds special cultural and religious significance in India. Aloe Vera. Indian Rosewood. Tusi Plant. Khair and Garden Asparagus are some of the popular trees grown in India. and the juices secreted from the certain herbs obtained in forests are known to cure even dreaded diseases like cancer and even AIDS. 2. Aloe vera. and the abundance of the plant life that it boasts of. Cork. India is known for its efficient ayurvedic treatments. 5. Neem Tree. Sal.associated with wisdom and immorality in India. banyan (Bodhi tree). 4. Following various types of trees discussed below:1. Kikar. Banyan is the National Tree of India. Banyan Tree. banana. India's medicinal are no less diverse. Hindu literature describes a celestial tree as having its roots in the heaven and its branches in the underworld that unites and connects beings of every kind. Brahmi. 3. Ashwagandha. Since ancient age. Teak Tree. Banyan Tree :Kingdom : Plantae Division Magnoliophyta Class: Magnoliopsida Order : Urticales Family : Moraceae Genus : Ficus Zoological name : Ficus Benghalensis Found In : Ranthambore National Park and Corbett National Park 9 .Peepal. India is known to be the land of various medicinal herbs.

000 people can sit under its shade at one time. bark. seeds and fig are used for the variety of disorders like diarrhoea. polyuria. Its leaf. if broken. In a couple weeks roots and a new shoot will start developing. The wood of the Banyan tree is used in making door panels. It is a evergreen tree. Location : Found in almost all the parts of India. oval and glossy. It is grown throughout the sub. The milky latex that comes from its leaves and stems is used in many Ayurvedic medicines. To reduce evaporation from the leaf surface. benghalensis.Description : Banyan tree is a huge tree with very extensive branches. macrophylla. F. rubiginosa are the other related species of the Banyan tree. It grows to a height of more than 21 meters and lives for many years. Insert the stem piece and a little of the leaf stalk into the rooting medium. The leaves are 10 -20 cm long and has many aerial roots. Medicinal uses : The Banyan tree also has several medicinal properties. One can Banyan Tree in the Botanical Garden of Calcutta. Cultivation methods : Banyan tree is easily propagated by root tip cuttings or the eye cuttings. F.pertusa. F. The leaves are broad. White milky fluid oozes out of leaves. They are widely grown in the Ranthambore National Park and Corbett National Park in India. aurea. 10 . you can roll the leaf and secure with a rubber band. F. Its bark is used for making paper and ropes. F. microcarpa. diabetes and urine disorders. It can grow in to the giant tree covering several hectares. It can grow in any type of soil. F. dental. It branches spread out and send trunk like roots to the ground in order to support itself. boxes and the other items. Cut apiece of the stem about half a inch below and above the leaf. It is said that at one time more than 10.Himalayan region and in the deciduous forests. Other Species : F. Banyan tree is the National tree of India. citrifolia.

door panels. Neem Tree :- 11 . People in India grow Banyan tree closer to the Peepal tree. The wood of the aerial roots is stronger and is used for the tent poles and cart yokes. It symbolize Trimurti with Vishnu as the barl. Cultural importance : Banyan tree is respected and is considered as sacred by the people in India. boxes. Shiva as the branches and Brahma as the roots. Banyan tree is the tree of knowledge and tree of life. Indians considered Banyan tree as 'Kalpa Vriksha' the tree that fulfil all your wishes. It is probably the biggest and friendliest of all trees. In the sacred Hindu Book 'Bhagwad Gita' Lord Krishna has sung praises on the Banyan tree.Other uses : In India its edible leaves are used as the plates. It is suitable for paper pulp. As Banyan tree is considered as the male plant closely related to the Peepal tree. It is planted for the soil conservation. The mighty Banyan Tree is considered as immortal and has always been the focal point for the village communities in India. Wood is used for well curbs. furniture etc.

Kingdom : Plantae Division Magnoliophyta Class: Magnoliopsida Order : Sapindales Family : Meliaceae Genus : Azadirachta Species : A. 12 . Bannerghata National Park. Bandhavgarh national Park. Mrugavani National Park. Sariska Wildlife sanctuary and Guindy National Park. indica Scientific Name : Azadirachta indica Found In : Ranthambore National Park.

It has a straight trunk. juss. The colour of the bark is brown grayish. Each part of neem is used in the medicines. juss. fissured even in small trees. A. It has been used in Ayurvedic medicines for more than 4000 years. It blossoms in spring with the small white flowers. Young neem tree cannot tolerate excessive cold. According to the Hindus. 13 . Medicinal uses : The indigenous people of Nilgiris consume the dried and powered tubulers of the terrestrial orchids as an energizing tonic. A. It grows slowly during the first year of planting. Neem bark contains tannins which are used in tanning and dyeing. it is believed that the Goddess of the chickenpox. Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary and Guindy National Park. stony. It is a popular village tree. A. It can be propagated through the seeds and cuttings.. Neem seed pulp is useful for methane gas production. Bandhavgarh national Park. It needs very little water and plenty of sunlight. round and thin skinned. Neem cake is widely used in India as fertilizer for sugarcane. Cultivation : Neem tree can easily be grown in the dry. Location : Neem tree is found throughout India. Neem oil extracted from its seeds is used in medicines. azedarac are the other related species of Neem tree. . juss. Although it is also widely grown in Ranthambore National Park. The leaves are alternate and consists of several leaflets with serrated edges. pest control and cosmetics etc. Other uses : People in India use its twigs to brush their teeth. Neem tea is usually taken to reduce the headache and fever. azedarac are the other related species of Neem tree. Its flowers are used to cure intestinal problems. Neem also holds medicinal value.Description : It is a tall evergreen tree with the small bright green leaves. The loive like edible fruit is oval. It is up to 100 feet tall. It is also useful as carbohydrate which is rich base for other industrial fermentations. Other Species : A. Its bark is hard rough and scaly. vegetable and other cash crops. Many countries have been consistently growing the Neem tree against the global warming. The bark of the yields the fiber that is woven into ropes. Its leaves are used in the treat Chickenpox. The worldwide Neem Foundation has helped in making the people aware about the importance of neem and its uses globally. Mrugavani National Park. A. azedarac are the other related species of Neem tree. Bannerghata National Park. A. Its flowers are small and white in colour. Neem bark acts as an analgesic and can cure high fever as of malaria. In south India its wood is used to make the furniture. shallow and clayey soils. Neem is considered as the useful tree in rehabilitating the waste land areas. Indians even believe that the Neem can even purify diseases. Even the skin diseases can be cured from the Neem leaves. Sithala lives in the Neem tree.

Aloe Vera :- Kingdom : Plantae Division Magnoliophyta Class: Liliopsida Order : Asparagales Family : Asphodelaceae Genus : Aloe Species: A .vera Zoological name : Aloe Vera Found In : Ranthambore Sanctuary Wildlife 14 . Neem is the wonder tree and finds mention in the number of ancient texts. It is said that planting Neem tree in the house is a ensured passage to heaven. The neem tree is also connected with the Sun. Its leaves are stung on the main entrance to remain away from the evil spirits. in the story of Neembark 'The Sun in the Neem tree'.Cultural Importance : One can find Neem in almost all the parts of India. Neem gives out more oxygen than other trees. Newly born babies are laid upon the Neem leaves to provide them with the protective aura. Brides take bath in the water filled with the Neem leaves.

They should be potted in the spring season and watered carefully until established. It does not have stems. Aloe Chinensis. Other species of Aloe Vera : There are more than 200 species of Aloe Vera. It has thick freshly leaves with sharp points. The tissue in the centre of the Aloe leaf contains a gel which yields the aloe gel. It has a fibrous root system. Aloe Vera needs the temperature of above 40 degrees. It is the member of the Lilly family. Aloe Forex. Location : Aloe Vera is cultivated throughout India. Its leaves are rich in water that is why it can survive for years. The roots of the pant are thick and fibrous. Gujarat and South India. Its leaves are even long and triangular in shape. The fruit is the triangular capsule containing numerous seeds. It mainly grows in the tropical and sub tropical areas. Aloe Variegata. It is widely grown in the Ranthambore National Park in India Cultivation methods : Aloe Vera plant is propagated through the seed. They should be watered regularly in the summers. It prefers a well drained sandy soil in sunny location. Aloe Lalifolia and Curacao Aloe are some of the known species of Aloe Vera. Aloe Barbadensis Miller. It is commonly found in Mumbai. Aloe Saponaria. It grows in the arid climate. These leaves have spiky margins and are blotched creams. It grows well on sandy and well drained soil. which are up to 18 inches long and 2 inches wide at the base. But over watering can kill 15 .Description : Aloe Vera grows to a height of 12 to 16 inches.

Its fluid is beneficial in reducing the inflammation and pain. Tulsi Plant :- 16 . It can also be used to remove dandruff from the hair. burns. It also grows in partial shade. It is called as the plant of immorality. Aloe Vera cures the skin diseases. Cultural Importance :Aloe Vera has been mentioned several times in the sacred scriptures. It is even used in the preparation of shampoos. It reaches the maturity in four years when the leaves are harvested. It prevents from fungus. It is also mentioned in the holy book of Bible. It has been used by the tribal people as a medicine for the century. The leaves of Aloe Vera is used for the treatment of facial edema or swelling. It is grown in houses for the decoration. which is used against constipation. The leaf sap is used to make a soothing and healing moisturizing cream. Aloe Vera is taken internally for the stomach disorders. It is used in the making of anti wrinkle cream. Organic Aloe Vera juice reduces acidity. which is good for the dry skin. used to heal the burn marks. and fungal infection. Other uses : Aloe Vera is a very popular potted plant. The fresh juice of its leaf blades can be applied directly to the ulcers. It is believed to have been used for the preservation of the body of the Jesus Christ. Curacao aloe acts as laxative. influenza virus. Aloe Vera is used in cosmetics and even in the food industry.the plant. measles. sunburns. Medicinal uses : Aloe Vera is the herbal plant. and high fever.

Kingdom : Plantae Division Magnoliophyta Class: Magnoliopsida Order : Lamiales Family : Lamiaceae Genus : Ocimum Species : O. tenuiflorum Scientific Name : Ocimum Sanctum Found In : Gir National Park and Sasangir National Park 17 .

It attains the height of about 75 – 90 cm. insomnia and cholera. seeds and even the soil is considered as holy. 18 .Even today people in India maintain a potted Tulsi plant. Medicinal uses : Tulsi has got the great medicinal value. One can also buy several handicraft jewellery items made of Tulsi wood. It is considered as the holy plant in the Indian Subcontinent.4 cm in length. It is the time of the Tulsi vivah (marriage). Its flowers are purple – creamish in colour. The Rama Tulsi is the effective remedy for the Severe acute Respiratory Syndrome. Tulsi symbolises purity. who was one of Lord Krishna's eternal consorts. It is mainly grown in the temperate climate. headache. In India people grow Tulsi as the religious plant and worship it. The oil extracted from the Karpoora Tulsi is mostly used in the herbal toiletry. hysteria. Its oil is also used against the insects and bacteria. Other species : Ocimum canum (Ram tulsi or Kali Tulsi). On this day Tulsi is decorated and coloured as a bride. Tulsi prefers rich soil for its growth. Tulsi is taken as the herbal tea. Tulsi got its name from Tulasi Devi. Its seeds are flat. Cultural Importance : Tulsi is the sacred plant dearer to the Lord Vishnu. light up the diya near it and worships it daily. It is very effective against indigestion. Juice of its leaves gives relief in cold. Its seeds are yellow to reddish in colour. Ocimum Kilmand. fever. Its wood is considered as more powerful than any other gem that helps in protecting one from the negative influences. A Hindu house is considered incomplete without the Tulsi plant in the courtyard. The stems. Tulsi is belived to promote longevity and lifelong happiness. Location : Tulsi is widely grown in the Gir Wildlife Sanctuary and Sasangir National Park in India. Other uses : Many people wears the Tulsi beads. The leaves are 2. The womens water the plant. For over the centuries Tulsi (the queen of herbs) has been known for its remarkable healing properties. Tulsi helps in curing malaria. According to the ancient texts Tulsi is glorified as the one who helps in bringing people closer to the divine.Description : Tulsi is a heavy branched having hair all over. Tulsi oil is also used as the ear drop. Leaves of Tulsi contains very essential oil. The Tulsi with the green leaves is called the Shri Tulsi and one with the reddish leaves is called the Krishna Tulsi. Tulsi grows wild in tropics and warm regions. leaves. bronchitis and cough. It requires full sunlight. Hindus perform special Tulsi puja in the Kartik month which starts after Sharad Poornima. Cultivation methods : Tulsi seeds germinate easily. Its leaves are used in temples for the worship purposes and also on the several occasions such as marriage. The fresh leaves of Tulsi are taken by the millions of people every day. Ocimum scharicum are the other related species of the Tulsi (Ocimum Sanctum). They are watered from time to time and germinated in one to two weeks. which is said to have certain physical and medicinal properties. The seeds are mainly sown in the spring season. Ocimum basilicum. It has round oval shaped leaves which are up to 5 cm long.

It produces the large leaf similar to the tobacco leaf. Satpura National Park. The fruit is a drupe. medium lusture and the oily feel. It is generally grown straight with the uneven texture.Teak Tree :Kingdom : Plantae Division Magnoliophyta Class: Magnoliopsida Order : Lamiales Family : Verbenaceae Genus : Tectona Scientific Name : Tectona Grandis Found In : Gir National Park. It has bluish to white flowers. Pench Tiger Reserve Description : Teak is tall evergreen tree. It attains the height of about 30 meter. It has yellowish blonde to reddish brown wood. The upper 19 . The bark is whitish gray in colour.

Digestion may be enhanced by the teak wood or bark. It is widely used to make the doors and house windows. Cultivation methods : The new plants can also be propagated from cuttings. The fruit is enclosed by the bladder like calyx. . It is usually planted when the four to six weeks old. 20 . Other uses : It is used in the furniture making. boat decks and for indoor flooring. and Tectona philippinensis are the other related species of the Teak tree. Its wood contains scented oil which is the repellent to insects. which is light brown. Plough the land thoroughly and level it. Medicinal uses : Teak also holds the medicinal value. The best season to plant the teak is monsoon. It is resistant to the attack of termites. ribbed and papery. Other species : Tectona grandia. Location : Teak is well grown in all the parts of India. The bark is bitter tonic and is considered useful in fever. Teak is probably the best protected commercial species in the world. It is also useful in headache and stomach problems. Teal requires loamy soil rich in humus and having the right content of moisture with good drainage. Tectona hamiltoniana. Satpura National Park. most probably after the first shower. The leaves yield the dye which is used to colour the clothes and edible. Carry out weeding operations regularly.surface of the tree is rough to touch and the inner surface has hairs. It is also found in the Gir National Park. Pench Tiger Reserve in India.

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