Ecology, Environment and Conservation Paper

Vol.02, Issue 1,2, 1996; Page No.(7-10)

THE ROLE OF FORESTS IN ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION IN MADHYA PRADESH

B. P. Singh

Abstract

Madhya Pradesh is the natural junction point of the two most important timber species in India, sal and teak. Even today one can observe the sharp dividing line of the Denwa, which segregates the sal of Pachmarhi from the teak of Bari and the hills of Betul. However, in the Kurchel valley in Bastarone sees intermingling of sal and teak, which means that in the past there must have been an intermediate zone in which the two species co-existed. More than a century ago Forsyth observed that the Central Indian Highlands are the Meeting points of the vegetable life of north eastern and south western India, with the principal forest tree of upper India, sal meeting the most important forest tree of western India, teak, in these highlands, with 80 degrees longitude as the diving line. Of course since then sal has almost disappeared from upper India and the sal forests have themselves come under immense pressure even in this state. Never the less sal still accounts for 16.54% of the forest wealth in Madhya Pradesh, being found in ten districts of the state. Teak represents 17.88%o1, the forest wealth and is to be found in fifteen districts. The rest, 65.68%, consists of mixed deciduous forests, predominant in eleven dis- tricts of the state, but well distributed throughout the forests of the M.P. The under story of the mixed deciduous and teak forests consists of bamboo, which is one of the most important forest apecies in the state.

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