Exploring Urban Ethnobotany: A Case Study of Medicinal Plants Traded in Gede Hardjonagoro Market, Surakarta, Indonesia


  • Santhyami Department of Biology Education, Faculty of Teacher Training and Education, Universitas Muhammadiyah Surakarta, Jl. A. Yani Tromol Pos I, Pabelan, Kartasura, Surakarta 57162, Jawa Tengah, Indonesia
  • Laraswati Department of Biology Education, Faculty of Teacher Training and Education, Universitas Muhammadiyah Surakarta, Jl. A. Yani Tromol Pos I, Pabelan, Kartasura, Surakarta 57162, Jawa Tengah, Indonesia
  • Lina Agustina Department of Biology Education, Faculty of Teacher Training and Education, Universitas Muhammadiyah Surakarta, Jl. A. Yani Tromol Pos I, Pabelan, Kartasura, Surakarta 57162, Jawa Tengah, Indonesia
  • Putri Agustina Department of Biology Education, Faculty of Teacher Training and Education, Universitas Muhammadiyah Surakarta, Jl. A. Yani Tromol Pos I, Pabelan, Kartasura, Surakarta 57162, Jawa Tengah, Indonesia




Ethnobotany, Peranakan, Phytogeography, Phytomedicine, Urban


The former royal city of Surakarta, Indonesia, is renowned for a uniquely cosmopolitan culture,
blending high Javanese traditions with various peranakan (mixed ethnicity). This unique cultural
fusion has facilitated the exchange of knowledge, particularly in relation to usage of various plants
as phytomedicine by the urban populace. Therefore, this study aimed to explore the variety, utility,
and phytogeography of phytomedicine available at Gede Hardjonagoro Market (Pasar Gede), the
main market of Surakarta and Greater Solo Area (GSA). An ethnobotanical approach was used
combining semi-structured interviews, participative observation, and documentation. The utility
of plants was assessed through a descriptive and quantitative approach, using Use Value (UV) and
Fidelity Level (FL) metrics. The results showed that a total of 76 species were found from 39
families of medicinal plants currently on sale in Pasar Gede. Zingiber officinale Roscoe had the
highest UV, while 7 species had the highest FL (100%) including Elephantopus scaber for
hepatitis, Sonchus arvensis for urolithiasis, and Gynura pseudochina for mastitis.
Furthermore, Caesalpinia sappan was for pruritis, Myristica fragrans and Piper cubeba for
diarrhea, as well as Curcuma heynaena for helminthiasis. Most species were native to
Indomalayan realm (50 species), divided into Indochinese (21 species), Indian (12 species), Sunda
Shelf (9 species), and others (8 species), with only 8 species found on Java Island. The results
implied that trade routes and cultural exchange among peranakan ethnic group had contributed to
the diversity of medicinal plants in Surakarta.

Author Biography

Santhyami, Department of Biology Education, Faculty of Teacher Training and Education, Universitas Muhammadiyah Surakarta, Jl. A. Yani Tromol Pos I, Pabelan, Kartasura, Surakarta 57162, Jawa Tengah, Indonesia

Environmental Study Centre, Universitas Muhammadiyah Surakarta, Jl. A. Yani Tromol Pos I, Pabelan, Kartasura, Surakarta 57162, Jawa Tengah, Indonesia


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How to Cite

Santhyami, Laraswati, Agustina, L., & Agustina, P. (2024). Exploring Urban Ethnobotany: A Case Study of Medicinal Plants Traded in Gede Hardjonagoro Market, Surakarta, Indonesia. Tropical Journal of Natural Product Research (TJNPR), 8(4), 6839–6851. https://doi.org/10.26538/tjnpr/v8i4.13