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University of Puget

Publication Date

Fall 2010

Program Name

Vietnam/Cambodia: Ecology and Community-based Natural Resource Management


Members of the Raglay community of Cãu Gãy Village were interviewed to determine the extent and nature of their traditional reliance on plants. This community, located in the buffer zone of Núi Chúa National Park, was found to utilize 64 plant species for a wide variety of uses. Botanical specimens and photographs were used to identify 42 plants to species level, 13 to genus level, and 6 to family level, while 3 remained unidentified. For each plant, the Raglay name, local Vietnamese name, use, specific application, and preparation were documented, as well as any details of ritual or commercial significance.

The plants were organized by use into the following distinct categories, presented by frequency of occurrence: medicine, food, fiber and rattan, poison, shampoo, dye, betel chew, and other uses. A total of 30 plants were used for medicinal purposes in order to treat 20 categories of illness or injury. Only 8 species were recorded which were regularly sold, although this number is clearly not representative of the whole range of local Non-Timber Forest Product commercialization. Of the documented species, those which were traditionally utilized as shampoo, dyes, or for fiber and rattan are most suitable for development as part of The Institute of Tropical Biology’s ecotourism initiative, which seeks to provide alternative livelihoods for the Raglay.


Alternative and Complementary Medicine | Asian Studies | Botany | Forest Biology | Forest Management | Natural Resources and Conservation | Plant Sciences | Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology


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