Floristic diversity and the composition of vascular plants are described for the moist Afromontane forest (MAF) of Wondo Genet, south-central Ethiopia. A total of 75 (20 x 20 m) quadrats were sampled and data on species identity, abundance, elevation, slope and aspect were recorded. Different diversity indices and ordination techniques were used to analyze the data. A total of 240 plant species including seven endemic plant species were found representing 94 families and 210 genera, of which trees constitute 23.8%, shrubs 25%, herbs 35%, lianas 11.3% and ferns 5%. Cluster and indicator species analyses revealed five plant communities described as: Teclea nobilis-Calpurnia aurea, Erythrococca trichogyne-Millettia ferruginea, Croton macrostachyus-Vernonia hochstetteri, Protea gaguedi-Rhus retinorrhoea and Dodonaea angustifolia-Hypericum quartinianum. Elevation (R2=0.48, P<0.001), slope (R2=0.14, P<0.001) and aspect (R2=0.04, P<0.01) correlated significantly and negatively with species richness, whereas only elevation (R2=0.30, P<0.001) and slope (R2=0.13, P<0.001) related significantly and negatively with abundance. Sørensen’s similarity coefficient indicates that the forest of Wondo Genet is similar to moist montane forests of southwestern and southeastern Ethiopia. Given the high diversity, coupled with the existence of endemic species, ecosystem conservation and restoration strategies with further research are warranted.
Aerts R., van Overtveld K., Haile M, Hermy M. Deckers J. & Muys B. 2006. Species composition and diversity of small Afromontane forest fragments in northern Ethiopia. Plant Ecol. 187: 127-142.
Albert R. S. & Christian S. 2007. Interactions of Elevation, Aspect, and Slope in models of Forest Species Composition and Productivity. Forest Sci. 53: 486-492.
Austin M. P., Nicholls A. O. & Margules C. R. 1990.
Measurement of the realized qualitative niche: environmental niches of Eucalyptus species. Ecological Mono. 60: 161-177.
Bale C. L. & Charley J. L. 1994. The impact of aspect on forest floor characteristics in some eastern Australian sites. Forest Ecol. Manage. 67: 305-317.
Bale C. L., Williams B. J. & Charley J. L. 1998. The impact of aspect on forest structure and floristics in some eastern Australian sites. Forest Ecol. Manage. 110: 363-377.
Bekele T. 1994. Phytosociology and Ecology of a Humid Afromontane Forest on the Central Plateau of Ethiopia. J. Veg. Sci. 5: 87-98
Chaffey D. R. 1979. Southwest Ethiopia Forest Inventory Project. An Inventory of Forest at Munessa and Shashemene. Project Report 29. Land Resources Division, Ministry of Overseas Development, London.
Dessie G. & Kleman J. 2007. Pattern and Magnitude of Deforestation in the South Central Rift Valley Region of Ethiopia. Mountain research and development 27: 162-168.
Didita M., Nemomissa S. & Woldemariam Gole T. 2010. Floristic and structural analysis of the woodland vegetation around Dello Menna, Southeast Ethiopia. J. For. Res. 21: 395-408.
Dufrene M. & Legendre P. 1997. Species assemblages and indicator species: the need for a flexible asymmetrical approach. Ecological Mono. 67: 345-366.
Edwards S., Demissew S. & Hedverg I. (eds.). 1997. Flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea, vol. 6. National Herbarium, Addis Ababa and Uppsala University, Uppsala.
Edwards S., Tadesse M., Demissew S. & Hedverg I. (eds.). 2000. Flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea, part 1, vol. 2. National Herbarium, Addis Ababa and Uppsala University, Uppsala.
Edwards S., Woldemariam Gole T. & Hedverg I. (eds.). 1995. Flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea. vol. 2, part 2. Canellaceae to Euphorbiaceae. Addis Ababa and Uppsala University, Uppsala.
Ellu G. & Obusa J. 2005. Tree conditions and natural regeneration in disturbed sites of Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park, South-western Uganda. Tropical Ecol. 46: 99-111.
Eriksson H. & Stern M. 1987. A soil study at Wono Genet forestry resources institute, Ethiopia. Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, International Rural Development Centre. Working paper 48, 65 pp., Uppsala.
Fontaine M., Aerts R., Özakan K, Mert A., Gulsoy S., Suel H., Waelkens M. & Muys B. 2007 Elevation and exposition rather than soil types determine communities and their suitability in Mediterranean mountain forest. Forest Ecol. Manage. 247: 18-25.
Friis I. 1992. Forests and forest trees of northeast tropical Africa - their natural habitats and distribution patterns in Ethiopia, Djibouti and Somalia. Kew Bull. Add. Ser. 15: 1-396.
Friis I., Rasmussen F. N. & Vollesen K. 1982. Studies in the flora and vegetation of SW Ethiopia. Opera Botanica 63: 1-70.
Friis I., Edwards S., Ensermu K. & Sebsebe D. 2001. Diversity and endemism in the flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea-what do the published Flora volumes tell us? In: I. Friis & O. Ryding (eds.). Proceedings of the 3rd International Symposium on the Flora of Ethiopia & Eritrea. Biol. Skr. 54: 173-193.
Friis I., Demissew S. & Breugel P. V. 2010. Atlas of the potential vegetation of Ethiopia. The Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Gebre-Egziabher T. 1991. Diversity of Ethiopian flora. In: J. M. M. Engels, J. G. Hawak es & W. Melaku (eds.). Plant Genetic Resources of Ethiopia, pp 75-81. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
Hedberg I. & Edwards S. (eds.). 1989. Flora of Ethiopia, vol. 3. Pittosporaceae to Araliaceae, 659 pp. The National Herbarium, Addis Ababa and Uppsala University, Uppsala.
Hedberg I. & Edwards S. (eds.). 1995. Flora of Ethiopia, vol. 7. Poaceae (Gramineae), 420 pp. The National Herbarium, Addis Ababa and Uppsala University, Uppsala.
Hedberg I., Edwards S. & Nemomissa S. (eds.). 2003. Flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea, vol. 4 (2), Part 1: Apiaceae to Dipsacaceae, 352 pp. The National Herbarium, Addis Ababa and Uppsala University, Uppsala.
Hitimana J., Legilisho K. J. & Njunge J. T. 2004. Forest structure characteristics in disturbed sites of Mt. Elgon Moist Lower Montane Forest, western Kenya. Forest Ecology Management 194: 269-291
Holland P. G. & Steyne D. G. 1975. Vegetation response to latitudinal variations in slope angle and aspect. J. Biogeo. 2: 179-183.
Kharkwal G., Mehrota P., Rawat Y. S. & Rico-Gray V. 2005. Distribution of plant life forms along an altitudinal gradient in the Central Himalayan region of India. Current Sci. 89: 873-878.
Kindt R. & Coe R. 2005. Tree diversity analysis. A manual and software for common statistical methods for ecological and biodiversity studies, 207 pp. World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) Nairobi.
Lomolino M. V. 2001. Elevation gradients of species-density: historical and prospective views. Global Ecol. Biogeo. 10: 3-13.
Lulekal L., Kelbessa E., Bekele T. & Yineger H. 2008. Plant species composition and structure of the Mana Angetu moist montane forest, south-eastern Ethiopia. J. East Afri. Nat. Hist. 97: 165-185.
Lyaruu H. V., Eliapenda S. & Backeus I. 2000. Floristic, structural and seed bank diversity of a dry Afromontane forest at Mafai, central Tanzania. Biodivers Conserv 9: 241-263.
Magurran A. E. 2004. Measuring biological diversity. 256 pp. Black-well Sciences, Oxford, UK.
McCune B. & Grace J. B. 2002. Analysis of Ecological Communities. MjM Software Design, Gleneden Beach.
McCune B. & Mefford M. J. 2006. PC-ORD. Multivariate analysis of ecological data, Version 5. MjM Software design, Gleneden Beach.
Ovales F. A. & Collins M. E. 1986. Soil-landscape relationships and soil variability in North Central Florida. Soil Sci. Soc. Ame. J. 50: 401-408.
Senbeta F. & Teketa y D. 2003. Diversity, community types and population structure of woody plants in Kimphee Forest: a Unique Nature Reserve in Southern Ethiopia. Ethiopian Journal of Biological Society 2: 169-187.
Senbeta F. & Manfred D. 2006. Effects of wild coffee management on species diversity in the Afromontane rainforests of Ethiopia. Forest Ecology and Management 232: 68-74
Sharman C. M., Suyal S., Gairola S. & Ghildiyal S. K. 2009. Species richness and diversity along an altitudinal gradient in moist temperate forest of Garhwal Himalaya. Journal of American Science 5: 119-128.
Smith J. M. B. 1977. Vegetation and microclimate of east- and west-facing slopes in the grasslands of Mt. Wihelm, Papua New Guinea. J. Ecol. 65: 39-53.
Smith T. & Huston M. 1989. A theory of spatial and temporal dynamics of plant communities. Vegetatio 83: 49-69.
Soromessa S., Teketa y D. & Demissew S. 2004. Ecological study of the vegetation in Gamo Gofa zone, southern Ethiopia. J. Trop. Ecol. 45: 209-221.
Tadesse M. & Nigat u L. 1996. An ecological and ethnobotanical study of wild or spontaneous coffee, Coffea arabica in Ethiopia. In: L. J. G. va n der Maesen, X. M. va n der Burgt & J. M. va n Eedenbach de Rooy (eds.). The Biodiversity of African Plants, pp. 227-294. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht.
Teketay D. 1995. Floristic composition of Dakata Valley, south-eastern Ethiopia, an implication for the conservation of biodiversity. Mt. Res. Dev. 15: 183-186.
Teketay D. 1997. Seedling population and regeneration of woody species in Dry Afromontane Forests of Ethiopia. For. Ecol. Manage. 98: 149-165.
Teketay D. & Bekele T. 1995. Floristic composition of Wof- Washa natural forest, Central Ethiopia: implications for the conservation of biodiversity. Feddes Repertorium 106: 127-147.
Tesfaye G., Bekele T. & Demissew S. 2008. Dryland woody vegetation along an altitudinal gradient on the eastern escarpment of Welo, Ethiopia. Eth. J. Sci. 31: 43-54.
Tewolde B. G. E. 1986. Preliminary studies on the ecology of a natural coffee (Coffea arabica) forest with emphasis on coffee. Symb. Bot. Ups. 26: 146-156.
Vivero J. L., Kelb essa E. & Demissew S. 2006. Progress on the Red List of plants of Ethiopia and Eritrea: conservation and biogeography of endemic flowering taxa. In: S. A. Ghazanfa r & H. J. Beentje (eds.). Taxonomy and ecology of African plants, their conservation and sustainable use, pp. 761-778. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Woldemariam Gole T., Teketa y D., Edwards S. & Olsson M. 2000. Woody plants and avian species diversity in a dry Afromontane forest on the central plateau of Ethiopia: biological indicators for conservation. Eth. J. Nat. Res. 2: 255-293.
Woldemariam Gole T., Borsch T., Denich M. & Teketa y D. 2008. Floristic composition and environmental factors characterizing coffee forests in south-west Ethiopia. Forest Ecol. Manage 255: 2138-2150.
Yimer F., Abdelkadir A. & Ledin S. 2006. Soil property variations in relation to topographic aspect and vegetation community in the South-eastern highlands of Ethiopia.Forest Ecol. Manage. 232: 90-99.