Research articles

By Mr. Raj P Singh , Mr. Nirlipt Rai , Dr. Vinod K Tiwari
Corresponding Author Dr. Vinod K Tiwari
Hindu College, Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh, - India 244001
Submitting Author Mr. Raj P Singh
Other Authors Mr. Raj P Singh
Hindu College, Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh, Moradabad, India - India 244001

Mr. Nirlipt Rai
Hindu College, Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh, IPS officers Messnsardar Vallabh Bhai Patel National Police Academy, Shivrampally, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh - India 244001


Angiosperms, Dicotyledonous plants, Polypetalous plants, Taxonomy, Biodiversity, Conservation.

Singh RP, Rai N, Tiwari VK. A Study of Polypetalous Plant Diversity of Moradabad District, Uttar Pradesh, India.. WebmedCentral ECOLOGY 2011;2(11):WMC001892
doi: 10.9754/journal.wmc.2011.001892
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Submitted on: 23 Nov 2011 10:09:41 AM GMT
Published on: 24 Nov 2011 04:37:09 PM GMT


This paper aimed to document the diversity of polypetalous plant species along with their vernacular names, habit, habitat, and their occurrence found in Moradabad district of Uttar Pradesh in India. This study is first of its kind conducted in the district showing current status of these plants. Polypetalous plants contribute substantially to the diversity of the district and their proper knowledge could play important role in planning for conservation and sustainable use of available resources. A total of 235 polypetalous plant species belonging to 154 genera and 46 families are included in the study.
Keywords: Angiosperms, Dicotyledonous plants, Polypetalous plants, Taxonomy, Biodiversity, Conservation.


India is one of the 12 centres of mega-diversity in the world and consists of 17,000 flowering plant species. It accounts for 8% of the global biodiversity with only 2.4% of the total land area in the world (Reddy, C. S., 2008; Hajra P. K. et al., 1997). In India, Uttar Pradesh is the most populous and largest state in which lies the Moradabad. Present study deals with the listing of polypetalous plants belonging to dicots found in Moradabad district. Polypetalous plants belong to dicotyledonous plants of angiosperm. Dicotyledonous plants are characterised by the presence of two cotyledons in their seeds and net veined leaves. Polypetalous plants  represent sub-class in dicots, are identified with the presence of distinct sepals and petals in their flowers along with free petals. This system of classification for angiosperm plants, used in this study, was given by Bentham and Hooker in Genera Plantarum (1862-1883). Sir, J. D. Hooker (1817-1911) published ‘The flora of British India’ in seven volumes during 1872- 97. Althouth some families names have been taken according to present changes deviating from Benthem and Hooker system. With its publication various floras of regional level came into being. Most notable among them was Duthies’ ‘Flora of the Upper Gangetic plain and of the adjacent Siwalik and Sub-Himalayan tracts’ in the context of present study, as it referred to the plants of Moradabad to some extent. Thereafter a paper titled ‘A contribution to the Angiospermic flora of Moradabad District’ was published by N. K. Paliwal and V. P. Singh in 1982 (Paliwal, N. K. et al., 1982), which provided useful insight into the plants of the district. Since then no such taxonomic studies are being conducted in the district. Only some of work is now started and a few papers are being published. These papers mainly deal with some aspects of the plants such as their medicinal use or invasiveness (Beena Kumari et al., 2009, Beena Kumari& Singh, N., 2009). So, practically Moradabad remains to be explored from the taxonomic point of view considering changes that took place in last few decades owing to heavy agriculture, urbanisation, industrialisation and other such factors. Here is an attempt to cover polypetalous plants from this point of view so as to provide information about the plants according to their current status.
“Taxonomy is the science of the description and classification of organism, essential in theoretical and applied biology” (Guerra – Gracia et. al., 2008).Plants represent one of the important element of biodiversity, thus the knowledge of plant species found in the different areas of the world is a pre-requisite to conserve the ecological biodiversity. It helps us to understand the overall structure and function of an ecosystem (Sumeet et. al., 2010). For this reason accurate and precise information of the known plant species from a given area is essential. The information is important as it allows us to prevent or avoid the potential chances of biodiversity loss and to plan future policy for the protection of our environment. For instance, invasive alien species which are second greatest threat to biodiversity (Wilcove et. al., 1998); can be better managed only if proper and accurate information is available for them. According to P. K. K. Nair “taxonomy is an integral component of biodiversity protection, remediation and eco-development”. (Nair, P. K. K., 2004). The present study aimed to provide insight into plants of Moradabad from taxonomic point of view, which in turn will provide important source for use in various other fields of biology in general and botany in particular.


The present study is concerned with the Moradabad district of Uttar Pradesh in India. Moradabad is situated between 28° -21' to 28° -16' N latitude and 78° -4' to 79° E longitude. The district is situated at the bank of river Ramganga, a tributary of river Ganga, which flows in its north east and Gangan river flows in south west of the city. It covers the total area of 3493 sq. km. The climate of district is tropical monsoonal type with annual average rainfall of 967mm. The average maximum and minimum   temperatures are 42.2°  and 4° respectively ( There are three distinct seasons viz. winter (October – February), summer (March – June), and rainy (June – September).City is well connected with other main cities of the country such as Delhi, Lucknow, Bareilly, and Patna by rail and road transport which facilitates industrial and commercial development in the area.
Extensive field surveys were conducted in the district from Jan 2007 to Dec 2010 during different seasons through regular field visits in order to get maximum representation of the polypetalous plant species. During our field visits plant samples were collected from agricultural lands, natural habitats, wastelands, fallow lands, road sides, parks, lawns, orchards, railway tracks, marshy places, rivers, ponds, lakes, river banks and other relevant localities to cover almost all the district in a systematic manner. Identification was done mostly with live specimens in the field itself but when it was not found possible then plant samples were identified in the lab. After identification herbarium sheets were prepared. Herbarium sheets were deposited with the Hindu College, Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh. Identification was done with the help of various floras such as Hooker (1883 – 1887), Duthies’ (1903 – 1929), Maheshwari’s (1966), Kumar’s (2001) and Mishra and Verma’s (1992). Identification of plant specimens was followed by, the arrangement of plants according to Bentham and Hooker’s system of classification. Additional information of plants about their habit, habitat and occurrence was also recorded on site and incorporated in the study.


Illustration 2 - shows polypetalous plant families along with the plant species found within them. There vernacular names, habit, habitat and occurrence in the area as cultivated, ornamental or wild plant species have also been shown. A total of 235 plant species belonging to 154 genera and 46 families are reported in our study. In all- total of 88 herbs, 27 shrubs, 50 trees, 23 climbers,9 small trees, 17 shrubs or small trees, 11 twining herbs and 10 herbs or shrubs have been included. The most speciose families in our study include- Fabaceae (79), Malvaceae (24), Cucurbitaceae (15), Brassicaceae (12), Rutaceae (10), etc. Among these families Fabaceae actually include three sub families viz. papilionaceae (45), Caesalpinieae (21), Mimosae (13) with maximum number of species. Some of most common plants species which occurred as weeds at various places include – Argemone mexicana (Papaveraceae), Cassia pumila (Fabaceae), Cassia occidentalis (Fabaceae), Cassia tora (Fabaceae), Coccinia cordifolia (Cucurbitaceae), Desmodium triflorum (Fabaceae), Fumaria indica (Fumariaceae), Jussiaea repens (Onagraceae), Nasturtium officinale (Brassicaceae),Oxalis corniculata (Oxalidaceae), Oxalis latifolia (Oxalidaceae), Rorippa indica (Brassicaceae), Sida spinosa (Malvaceae), Sida rhombifolia (Malvaceae), Sida acuta (Malvaceae), Sida cordifolia (Malvaceae), Stellaria media (Caryophyllaceae), Trianthema portulacastrum (Aizoaceae), Trigonella corniculata (Fabaceae), Triumfetta rhomboidea (Tiliaceae), and Urena lobata (Malavaceae) etc,. Among rarest plant species are Abelmoschus moschatus (Malvaceae), Ammannia baccifera (Lythraceae), Abrus precatorius (Fabaceae), Cayratia carnosa (Vitaceae), Dolichos biflorus (Fabaceae), Jussiaea perennis (Onagraceae), Mucuna prurita (Fabaceae), Oligomeris linifolia (Resedaceae), Oxalis martiana (Oxalidaceae), Urena repanda (Malvaceae), etc, of which only a few specimens were found. Infact only four plants of Abelmoschus moschatus were found to be cultivated in the interiors of only two villages named Lakri and Manhor Pur. Whereas only a few plants of Ammannia baccifera were found to be growing near the river Dhela, which is an ephemeral river, a tributary of river Ramganga.


Taxonomic knowledge is crucial to meet the challenges of biodiversity conservation in the 21st century (Bhaskaran et. al., 2010). It is of fundamental importance for understanding biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, as it provides us with the data to explore and describe biodiversity through scientific analysis. The study provides the basic information about the polypetalous plant species, one of the basic units of biodiversity, which are currently found in the district. Such a list could play an important role for the local and regional authorities interested in future to conserve and sustainably use the phyto-diversity for the sustainable development of the area.


The first author thanks Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR) for financial support through the joint CSIR – UGC Senior Research Fellowship (F. No. 10-2(5)/2006(ii)-E.U II).


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Source(s) of Funding

Council of Scientific & Industrial Research –University Grants Commission (CSIR – UGC), Government of India, New Delhi, India (F. No. 10-2(5)/2006(ii)-E.U II).

Competing Interests



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3 reviews posted so far

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Posted by Dr. Muniappan Ayyanar on 05 Jun 2011 03:02:33 AM GMT

Sir, first of all We like to thank you for reviewing our article. We are glad to know that you are ready to provide as with some suggestions to increase the value of our article. We will be pleased to... View more
Responded by Mr. Raj P Singh on 27 Jun 2011 10:51:19 AM GMT

Posted by Dr. B. N. Pandey on 04 Jun 2011 10:09:21 AM GMT

Thank you very much sir for giving your precious time and reviewing my article. I am extremely sorry as i failed to reply earlier in absence of internet connection. Raj Pal Singh ... View more
Responded by Mr. Raj P Singh on 27 Jun 2011 10:36:51 AM GMT

Posted by Dr. Seshu Lavania on 28 May 2011 11:28:27 AM GMT

Thank you very much madam for finding time and reviewing my article. I am sorry as I failed to reply earlier because I had no internet connection available to me for a long time. I will bring the desi... View more
Responded by Mr. Raj P Singh on 27 Jun 2011 10:33:01 AM GMT

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