Hostname: page-component-7d684dbfc8-dh8xm Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-09-30T11:51:52.073Z Has data issue: false Feature Flags: { "corePageComponentGetUserInfoFromSharedSession": true, "coreDisableEcommerce": false, "coreDisableSocialShare": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForArticlePurchase": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForBookPurchase": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForElementPurchase": false, "coreUseNewShare": true, "useRatesEcommerce": true } hasContentIssue false

Uses and management of black plum (Vitexdoniana Sweet) in Southern Benin

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 June 2012

Colombe Dadjo
Lab. Appl. Ecol., Fac. Agron. Sci., Univ. Abomey-Calavi, 01 PO Box 526, Cotonou, Rep. Benin
Achille Ephrem Assogbadjo
Lab. Appl. Ecol., Fac. Agron. Sci., Univ. Abomey-Calavi, 01 PO Box 526, Cotonou, Rep. Benin
Belarmain Fandohan*
Lab. Appl. Ecol., Fac. Agron. Sci., Univ. Abomey-Calavi, 01 PO Box 526, Cotonou, Rep. Benin
Romain Glèlè Kakaï
Lab. Appl. Ecol., Fac. Agron. Sci., Univ. Abomey-Calavi, 01 PO Box 526, Cotonou, Rep. Benin
Sebastian Chakeredza
ANAFE, PO Box 30677-00100, Nairobi, Kenya
Thierry Dèhouégnon Houehanou
Lab. Appl. Ecol., Fac. Agron. Sci., Univ. Abomey-Calavi, 01 PO Box 526, Cotonou, Rep. Benin
Patrick Van Damme
Lab. Trop. Sub-Trop. Agric. Ethnobot., Fac. Biosci. Eng., Univ. Ghent, Coupure Links 653, B-9000, Ghent, Belgium
Brice Sinsin
Lab. Appl. Ecol., Fac. Agron. Sci., Univ. Abomey-Calavi, 01 PO Box 526, Cotonou, Rep. Benin
* Correspondence and reprints
Get access


Introduction. Black plum (Vitex doniana) is an indigenous fruit tree species important for the livelihoods of rural populations. Currently, there is renewed national and international interest in black plum, and it has emerged as a priority species for domestication in Africa. The present work addressed farmers’ indigenous knowledge of the use and management of the species among different socio-cultural groups in Benin, taking into account gender differences. The specific objective of this work was to study the knowledge, uses, local gathering practices and management systems of V. doniana that are part of the traditions of the communities in Southern Benin. Materials and methods. A total of 150 participants randomly selected from three socio-cultural groups provided survey responses. Information collected mainly referred to the motivation of respondents to conserve black plum trees on their land, the local uses and the management practices to improve the regeneration and production of the black plum. Results and discussion. The study showed that knowledge of black plum is well distributed in the community. However, people have different interests in using black plum and there is variable knowledge of use and management practices. The food and medicinal categories were the most important uses. There were no significant differences in knowledge of the management and utility of black plum between men and women, or across socio-cultural groups. Conclusion. Given its value to the communities in southern Benin, black plum should be prioritized for domestication.

Original article
© 2012 Cirad/EDP Sciences

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)


Leakey, R.R.B., Win landuse strategies for Africa. 1: Building on experience with agroforests in Asia and Latin America, Int. For. Rev. 3 (2001) 110.Google Scholar
Leakey, R.R.B., Win landuse strategies for Africa. 2: Capturing economic and environmental benefits with multistrata agroforests, Int. For. Rev. 3 (2001) 1118.Google Scholar
Leakey, R.R.B., Schreckenberg, K., Tchoundjeu, Z., The potential relevance in Latin America of the West African experience with participatory domestication of indigenous fruits, Int. For. Rev. 5 (2003) 338347.Google Scholar
Martin G.J., Ethnobotany, A methods manual. People and plants conservation ser., Chapman and Hall, London, U.K., 1995.
Anon., Vers une approche régionale des ressources génétiques forestières en Afrique sub-saharienne. Recensement général de la population et de l’habitat sahélien, Actes du premier atelier régional de formation sur la conservation et l’utilisation durable des ressources génétiques forestières en Afrique de l’ouest, Afrique forestière (CIRAD / GILLSS /CORAF / CTA / DESC / FAO / UNEP / UNSO), IPGRI, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, 1999.
Shackleton, S.E., Shackleton, C.M., Netshiluvhi, T.R., Geach, B.S., Balance, A., Fairbanks, D.H.K., Use patterns and value of savannah resources in three rural villages in South Africa, Econ. Bot. 56 (2002) 130146.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Campos, M.T., Ehringhaus, C., Plant virtues are in the eyes of the beholders: a comparison of known palm uses among indigenous and folk communities of southwestern Amazonia, Econ. Bot. 57 (2003) 324344.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Albuquerque U.P. Lucena R.F.P, Selecãoe escolha dos informants, in: Albuquerque U.P., Lucena R.F.P. (Eds.), Métodos e Técnicas na Pesquisa Etnobotãnica, Recife Ed. Livro Rápido, NUPEEA, 2004, pp. 19–37.
Tomich, T.P., Van Noordwijk, M., Vosti, S., Witcover, J., Agricultural development with rainforest conservation: methods for seeking best bet alternatives to slash-and-burn, with applications to Brazil and Indonesia, J. Agric. Econ. 19 (1998) 159174. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sanchez, P.A., Leakey, R.R.B., Land use transformation in Africa: Three determinants for balancing food security with natural resource utilization, Eur. J. Agron. 7 (1997) 1523. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Anon., Programme de ressources génétiques forestières en Afrique au sud du Sahara: Réseau "Espéces Ligneuses Alimentaires", Eyog Matig O., Gandé Gaoué O. G., Dossou B. (Eds.), Compte rendu de la première réunion du réseau tenue 11–13 déc. 2000, CNSF Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, Bioversity Int., Montpellier, France, 2002.
Arbonnier M., Arbres arbustes et lianes des zones sèches d’Afrique de l’Ouest, CIRAD-MNHN, Montpellier, France, 2002.
Louppe D., Oteng-Amoako A.A., Brink M., Ressources végétales de l’Afrique tropicale, Prota 7 (1) : bois d’œuvre, CTA Wagening., Neth., 2008.
Orwa C., Mutua A., Kindt R., Jamnadass R., Anthony S., Agroforestree database: a tree reference and selection guide version 4.0, World Agrofor. Cent., Kenya, 2009.
De Souza S., Flore du Bénin. Noms des plantes médicinales dans les langues nationales béninoises, Univ. Ntl. Bénin, Cotonou, Bénin, 1988.
Dagnelie P., Statistiques théoriques et appliquées, de Boeck et Larcier, Bruxelles, Belg., 1998.
Monteiro, J.M., Albuquerque, U.P., Lins Neto, E.M.F., Araújo, E.L., Amorim, E.L.C., Use patterns and knowledge of medicinal species among two rural communities in Brazil’s semi–arid northeastern region, J. Ethnopharmacol. 105 (2006) 173186.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Assogbadjo, A.E., Glèlè Kakaï, R., Chadaré, F.J., Thomson, L., Kyndt, T., Sinsin, B., Van Damme, P., Folk classification, perception and preferences of baobab products in West Africa: Consequences for species conservation and improvement, Econ. Bot. 62 (1) (2008) 7484.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Byg, A., Baslev, H., Diversity and use of palms in Zahamena, Eastern Madagascar, Biodivers. Conserv. 10 (2001) 951970.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Santos, L.L., Ramos, M.A., Silva, S.I., Sales, M.F., Albuquerque, U.P., Caatinga ethnobotany: Anthropogenic landscape modification and useful species in Brazil’s semi–arid northeast, Econ. Bot. 63 (4) (2009) 363374.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
LinsNeto, E.M.F., Peroni, N., de Albuquerque, P.U., Traditional knowledge and management of umbu (Spondias tuberosa, Anacardiaceae): An endemic species from the semi–arid region of northeastern Brazil, Econ. Bot. 64 (1) (2010) 1121.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Okigbo, N.R., Fermentation of black plum (Vitex doniana Sweet) juice for production of wine, Fruits 58 (6) (2003) 363369.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Etkin N.L., The cull of the wild, in: Etkin N.L. (Eds.), Eating on the wild side, Univ. Arizona Press, Tucson, Ariz., U.S.A., 1994.
Etkin, N.L., Medicinal cuisines: Diet and ethnopharmacology, Int. J. Pharmacol. 34 (1996) 313326.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Leakey, R.R.B., Atangana, A.R., Kengni, E., Waruhiu, A.N., Usoro Tchoundjeu, C.Z., Anegbeh, P.O., Domestication of Dacryodes edulis in West and Central Africa: characterization of genetic variation, For. Trees Livelihoods 12 (2002) 5771.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Clement, C.R., 1492 and the loss of Amazonian crop genetic resources. I. The relation between domestication and human population decline, Econ. Bot. 53 (1999) 188202.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Boffa J.M., Agroforestry parklands in sub-Saharian Africa, FAO Conserv. Guide 34, Rome, Italy, 1999.
Ekue, M.R.M., Gailing, O., Finkeldey, R., Eyog-Matig, O., Indigenous knowledge, traditional management and genetic diversity of the endogenous agroforestry species ackee (Blighia sapida) in Benin, Acta Hortic. 806 (2009) 655661.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lira, R., Casas, A., Rosas-López, R., Paredes-Flores, M., Pérez-Negrón, E., RangelL-Landa, S., Solís, L., Torres, I., Dávila, P., Traditional knowledge and useful plant richness in the Tehuacán–Cuicatlán Valley, Mexico, Econ. Bot. 63 (2009) 271287.CrossRefGoogle Scholar