Explore the list of the most Endangered Plants in India that need protection. Some of these specimens will surprise you for sure!
India is home to a thriving biodiversity, with thousands of plant species thriving in its diverse ecosystems. However, with increasing deforestation, climate change, and other human-induced activities, many plant species are at risk of extinction. In this article, we will take a closer look at endangered plants in India that need our attention and conservation efforts.
Check out 20 Rare and Unique Native Plants of India here
What are Endangered Plants?
Endangered plants refer to plant species that are at risk of extinction due to various factors such as habitat destruction, climate change, pollution, and human activities. Some endangered plants are helpful as a source of traditional medicine, while others have important ecological roles.
It is crucial to identify and protect endangered plants to maintain the balance of our ecosystem and preserve the natural diversity of the planet. Conservation efforts such as habitat restoration, cultivating and preserving endangered plant species, and raising awareness about their importance can help prevent their extinction.
Here are the best native Indian flowers you can grow
Endangered Plants in India
1. Himalayan Yew
Botanical Name: Taxus wallichiana
Coming at the top of the list of Endangered Plants in India, this plant is exploited for its valuable wood, which is used to make taxol, a chemotherapy drug, this coniferous tree species found in the Himalayan region is threatened.
2. Nilgiri Sandalwood
Botanical Name: Santalum album
The majestic evergreen tree that perfumes the air with its aroma is a rare species found only in the Western Ghats. However, its existence is currently under threat due to habitat destruction and excessive harvesting of its prized oil and wood.
3. Indian Pitcher Plant
Botanical Name: Nepenthes khasiana
The exotic carnivorous plant species indigenous to the Northeastern region of India is currently facing a perilous situation due to rampant habitat loss and excessive harvesting.
The species is in danger of extinction mainly because of its high demand in the market for both medicinal and ornamental purposes.
Learn 28 Summer Flowering Plants in India here
4. Indian Gooseberry
Botanical Name: Phyllanthus emblica
You will be surprised to know that Amla also comes under the list of Endangered Plants in India. Over-exploitation for its medicinal properties and habitat loss have put this tree in danger of disappearing from our land.
5. Manipur Tree Quinine
Botanical Name: Dichroa febrifuga
The shrub, indigenous to the Northeastern region of India, is at risk of extinction as a result of excessive harvesting for its medicinal properties.
6. Wild Himalayan Cherry
Botanical Name: Prunus cerasoides
The Himalayan region is home to a beautiful deciduous tree that is facing a threat due to rampant over-exploitation for its valuable timber and medicinal properties.
Explore How to Grow Cherry Fruit here
7. Khasi Pine
Botanical Name: Pinus kesiya
The coniferous tree found in the Northeastern region of India also comes under the Endangered Plants in India. It is facing a serious threat due to the excessive demand for its timber and the loss of its natural habitat.
8. Himalayan Blue Poppy
Botanical Name: Meconopsis aculeata
Found in the Himalayan region, this flowering plant is threatened due to habitat loss and over-collection for its ornamental value.
9. Lady’s Slipper Orchid
Botanical Name: Cypripedium cordigerum
The Himalayan region is a natural habitat for a unique and exquisite orchid species, celebrated for its extraordinary beauty. It comes under the Endangered Plants in India list because of the destruction of its natural habitat and secondly, the rampant collection for horticulture.
Learn Orchid Tree Uses here
10. Western Ghats Tree Fern
Botanical Name: Cyathea nilgirensis
Located in the Western Ghats, this fern species is among the largest tree ferns on earth. Despite its impressive size, it faces significant threats stemming from habitat loss and over-collection for ornamental purposes.
11. Indian Ghost Tree
Botanical Name: Davidia involucrata
Found only in the Eastern Himalayas, this tree species is a rare and unique wonder known as the “Handkerchief Tree”. Its large, white bracts resemble delicate handkerchiefs, but unfortunately, it is threatened by habitat loss and over-collection for ornamental purposes.
12. Sangai Lily
Botanical Name: Lilium mackliniae
The fragile beauty of the Sangai lily, a rare and unique species, can only be witnessed in the northeastern region of India. Named after the endangered Sangai deer, this flower faces a severe threat due to the loss of its natural habitat and rampant over-collection by the horticulture industry.
Explore 24 Best Flowers that Bloom in Summer Heat of May and June here
13. Sweet Flag
Botanical Name: Acorus calamus
This wetland plant species, widely distributed throughout India, possesses remarkable medicinal properties. Unfortunately, its existence is currently under threat due to the combined factors of habitat loss, over-harvesting, and contamination of wetland environments.
14. Indian Wild Fig
Botanical Name: Ficus racemosa
Throughout India, there is a large deciduous tree species that stands out for its remarkable blend of edible fruit and medicinal properties. However, this plant faces grave threats due to habitat loss, over-exploitation, and competition from invasive species.
15. Rameshwaram Wild Betelvine
Botanical Name: Piper hymenophyllum
Located on the Rameshwaram island of Tamil Nadu, this wild species of betel vine is a significant cultural and religious symbol. Unfortunately, its existence is threatened by both habitat loss and over-collection of its leaves, which are widely used for chewing.
Check out 90 Palm Tree Types in India here
16. Manipur Tree
Botanical Name: Phoebe hainesiana
This rare and valuable tree species is native to the Northeastern region of India, known for its sought-after timber and medicinal properties. Unfortunately, this comes under Endangered Plants in India due to excessive logging and habitat destruction.
17. Indigenous Palm Groove Species
Botanical Name: Areca, Cocos nucifera
Palm trees are a ubiquitous sight throughout India and are prized for their multiple uses, such as delicious edible fruits, durable wood, and versatile fiber.
Unfortunately, these beloved trees are now endangered due to various factors such as loss of natural habitat, over-harvesting, and various diseases, including the lethal yellowing disease that poses a significant threat to coconut palms.