In a recent article published by the Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine the authors (Rainer W. Bussmann, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana, Carolina Romero and Robbie E. Hart) presented the results of their study exploring multiple markets in Colombia’s capital.
The study encountered 409 plant species belonging to 319 genera and 122 families. These were used for a total of 19 disease categories with 318 different applications. They conducted interviews in 38 plant vendors in 24 markets in Bogotá in order to elucidate more details on plant usage and provenance. The markets were chosen to cover as many neighborhoods of Bogotá as possible, thus trying to represent the complete geography of the city and its ethnically diverse population. Plants were always sold in the regular mercados de abasto—the regular food supply markets.
The authors concluded that the study indicated a very large species and use diversity of medicinal plants in the markets of Bogotá, with profound differences even between markets in close proximity. This might be explained by the great differences in the origin of populations in Bogotá, the floristic diversity in their regions of origin, and their very distinct plant use knowledge and preferences that are transferred to the markets through customer demand.