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تحميل الدليل التدريبي

أسئلة شائعة


 Dr. Jacob Thomas Pandalayil M.Sc., F.I.A.T., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Plant Taxonomist/Curator
Herbarium (KSU)
Dept. of Botany & Microbiology
College of Science
P.O. Box- 2455
Saudi Arabia
Office: 00966-1-4675807

Fax: 00966-1-4675806

Plant Taxonomy, Flora of Saudi Arabia, Phytogeography



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An Overview of the plant diversity in Saudi Arabia.

Plant diversity is a vital component of all major ecosystems. It helps in the protection of watersheds, stabilization of slopes, improvement of soils, moderation of climate and provides a habitat conducive for much of our wild fauna. Ever since the beginning of civilization, the association of man and plants are well known and the basic needs required for man such as food, clothing, fuel, shelter and medicine are, to a certain extent, fulfilled by plants. Saudi Arabia contains one of the diverse floras of this region. In addition to the endemic plants, the influences of the surrounding floristic regions can be seen in several parts of the plant diversity hotspots of Saudi Arabia.


The flora of Saudi Arabia has about 2243 species in 837 genera; of which 9 species are Gymnosperms and 27 are Pteridophytes. A total of 142 families are reported from all over Saudi Arabia; among these 37 are represented by a single species. Although the number of species occurring in a square kilometer area is less significant, especially in areas such as in the Central, Eastern and Northern regions, the regions in the northwestern and southwestern regions are densely vegetated and contain the highest number of species. Approximately 70% of the species are reported from these areas. According to the present estimates, Saudi Arabia contains 70 trees (3%), 600 shrubs (27%) and about 1583 herbs (70%). 



 Plant Diversity in Saudi Arabia ‭[2]‬


Approximately 52 strictly endemic species and 242 (10.78%) regional endemic species are present in the flora of Saudi Arabia, of which, majority are seen in the Hijaz Mountains of southwestern and northwestern regions.

Halophytes in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia contains over 100 halophytes distributed in 33 families. These species are either strictly halophytes or having adaptations to survive in wider ecological amplitude. Among the halophytes recorded from Saudi Arabia, the highest number of species comes from Chenopodiaceae family followed by Poaceae, Zygophyllaceae and Tamaricaceae. In Saudi Arabia halophytes provide a good source of fodder during adverse climatic conditions; some of them are rich in terms of nutritive value while others have plenty of water to quench the thirst of both wild and domesticated animals. Some of the halophytes found in the Red Sea coastal regions are: Avicennia marina, Rhizophora mucronata, Cressa cretica, Limonium spp., Zygophyllum coccineum, etc. whereas the halophytic species dominating in the Arabian Gulf coast are: Suaeda vermiculata, Suaeda maritima, Salicornia europaea, Halocnemum strobilaceum, Arthrocnemum macrostachyum, etc.


Saudi Arabia is generally divided into three chorological zones, namely Saharo-Sindian regional zone, Somali-Masai regional centre of endemism and Afro-montane archipelago-like regional centre of endemism. Saharo-Sindian zone is again divided into two sub zones – Arabian and Nubo-Sindian.      

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 Plant Diversity in Saudi Arabia ‭[1]‬

Herbarium (KSU), Dept. of Botany & Microbiology

Functions of a Herbarium

There are two primary functions served by a herbarium, namely, accurate identification and alpha taxonomic research, both monographic and floristic. There are secondary functions which include a closer interaction between the student of general systematics and the herbarium. The main objectives of the Saudi Arabian Herbaria are:


ü  To fulfill public needs by way of supplying materials and scientific information in respect of plants, by arranging training courses, exhibitions, etc. on plant science and by providing research facilities and job opportunities for young Saudi Graduates.

ü  To carry out the research programmes of fundamental as well as applied value.

ü  To preserve national plant wealth including type materials.

ü  To facilitate exchange and loan of preserved plant material for various purposes including research

Various Herbaria in Saudi Arabia.

  • Herbarium (KSU), Department of Botany & Microbiology, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh. No. of specimens   c. 35,000
  • The National Herbarium (RIY), Ministry of Agriculture, Riyadh. No. of Specimens c. 30,000.
  • Herbarium (MUZ), Natural Resources and Environmental Research Institute, King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology, Riyadh,   No. of Specimens,   c. 10, 000.
  • Herbarium, College of Pharmacy, King Saud University, Riyadh, No. of Specimens, c. 10,000.
  • Herbarium, National Commission for Wildlife Conservation and Development, Riyadh, No. of Specimens,  c. 10,000.
  • Herbarium, Department of Chemistry and Botany, College of Agricultural Sciences, King Faisal University, Hofuf..                                                                                                                  READ MORE




Important Links

 Prefered Links

 Plant diversity in Saud Arabia
 Kew Botanic Gardens- Herbarium Catalogue
 Directory-open access Journals
 Poisonous plant list
 KEW- Herbarium catalogue
 World's Taxonomists Data base
 International Plant Name Index
 ISI Journal list
 Botanical Dictionary
 Botanical Journal list
 International Code of Botanical Nomenclature
 Science- Master Journal List
 Cities and Towns in Saudi Arabia
 Indian National Institute of Ecology
 HERBARIUM (KSU) web site (Index Herbariorum, New York)
 Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh
 Search Site
 IUCN Red List of Threatened species
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