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Friends of Conservation
101 St Martin's Lane
London, WC2N 4AZ
Tel: 020 3667 7017

Pragya works in the large cold desert in the western Indian Himalayas, covering an area of about 80,000 sq. km. Some rare and extremely valuable medicinal and aromatic plants grow in these arid heights. Many of these plants have suffered depletion rates of up to 80% of their populations in the last six to ten years and a number of species (some of which are endemic to the region) are on the brink of extinction. Overharvesting for use and trade, destructive forms of harvesting and overgrazing are some of the causes leading to depletion and fragmentation of the species populations. 

Research will produce a comprehensive inventory of medicinal plants which will help to set priorities for species and the forest areas needing preservation. Horticultural nurseries including 'herb orphanages' for rare and slow-growing species will be created together with mixed micro-plantations of endemic species through community forestry initiatives as well as herbal gardens for low-density, high-value plants.

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