Plant Ecology and Phytogeography


Mr. Srimay Pradhan


Core Courses

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Course Name : Plant Ecology and Phytogeography

Code(Credit) : CUTM1463 (3-2-1)

Course Objectives

• This course will provide to understand the major factors influencing the geographic distribution of species.
• Be able to understand the ecological context in which a particular species may have evolved, or a specific ecological process takes place.

Learning Outcomes

• Have increased capacity to think critically; ability to design and execute an experiment; confidence and ability in communicating ideas.
• Serve as a lasting and practical basis for a career, for example, in research whether industry or academia - as well as teaching, media, law, commerce, government or management.
• Pursue higher studies to get employability opportunity.

Course Syllabus


Basic concepts; Levels of organization. Inter-relationships between the living world and the environment, the components and dynamism, homeostasis.

Soil: Importance; Origin; Formation; Composition; Physical; Chemical and Biological components; Soil Profile; Role of climate in soil development.


Determination of organic matter of different soil samples by Walkley& Black rapid titration method.


Analysis for carbonates, chlorides, nitrates, sulphates, organic matter and base deficiency from two soil samples by rapid field tests.


Water :Importance: States of water in the environment; Atmospheric moisture; Precipitation types (rain, fog, snow, hail, dew); Hydrological Cycle; Water in soil; Water table.

Light, temperature, wind and fire: Variations; adaptations of plants to their variation.


Determination of pH of various soil and water samples (pH meter, universal indicator/Lovibond comparator and pH paper)


Study of instruments used to measure microclimatic variables: Soil thermometer, maximum and minimum thermometer, Anemometer, Psychrometer/ Hygrometer, Rain gauge and Lux meter.


Biotic interactions: Trophic organization, basic source of energy, Autotrophy, Heterotrophy; Symbiosis, Commensalism, Parasitism; Food chains and webs; Ecological pyramids; Biomass, Standing crop.


Comparison of bulk density, porosity and rate of infiltration of water in soils of three habitats.


Determination of dissolved oxygen of water samples from polluted and unpolluted sources.


Population ecology: Characteristics and Dynamics. Ecological Speciation

Plant communities: Concept of ecological amplitude; Habitat and niche; Characters: analytical and synthetic; Ecotone and edge effect; Dynamics: succession – processes, types; climax concepts.


Study of morphological adaptations of hydrophytes and xerophytes


Study of biotic interactions of the following: Stem parasite (Cuscuta), Root parasite (Orobanche), Epiphytes, Predation (Insectivorous plants).


Ecosystems: Structure; Processes; Trophic organisation; Food chains and Food webs; Ecological pyramids.


Determination of minimal quadrat size for the study of herbaceous vegetation in the college campus, by species area curve method (species to be listed).


Determination of minimal quadrat size for the study of herbaceous vegetation in the college campus, by species area curve method (species to be listed)


Functional aspects of ecosystem: Principles and models of energy flow; Production and productivity; Ecological efficiencies; Biogeochemical cycles; Cycling of Carbon, Nitrogen and Phosphorus.


Determination of minimal quadrat size for the study of herbaceous vegetation in the college campus, by species area curve method (species to be listed).


Phytogeography: Principles; Continental drift; Theory of tolerance; Endemism; Brief description of major terrestrial biomes (one each from tropical, temperate & tundra); Phytogeographical division of India; Local Vegetation.


Field visit with 15 familiarize students to different ecological sites.

Text Book:

1. Odum, E.P. (2005). Fundamentals of ecology. Cengage Learning India Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi. 5th edition.
2. Singh, J.S., Singh, S.P., Gupta, S. (2006). Ecology Environment and Resource Conservation. Anamaya Publications, New Delhi, India.
3. Sharma, P.D. (2010). Ecology and Environment. Rastogi Publications, Meerut, India. 8th edition.

Reference Book:

1. Wilkinson, D.M. (2007). Fundamental Processes in Ecology: An Earth Systems Approach. Oxford University Press. U.S.A.

2. Kormondy, E.J. (1996). Concepts of ecology. PHI Learning Pvt. Ltd., Delhi, India. 4th edition.

Session 2

Session 4 (Assignment-1) 1 hour

Session 6

Session 9

Session 13 (Assignment-2) 1 hour

Session 15

Session 16

Session 17 (Assignment-3) 1 hour

Session 19

Session 22 (Assignment-4) 1 hour

Session 24 (Assignment-5) 1 hour

Session 25

Session 26 (Assignment-6) 1 hour

Session 32 (Assignment-7) 1 hour

Session 34

Session 35 (Assignment-8) 1 hour

Session 40 (Assignment-9) 1 hour

Session 44 (Assignment-10) 1 hour

Session 46

Session 47 (Assignment-11) 1 hour

Session 51 (Assignment-12) 1 hour

Case Studies

Case Studies

Our Main Teachers

Mr. Srimay Pradhan

Assistant Professor in Department of Botany, School of Applied Sciences, Centurion University of Technology and Management

Mr. Srimay Pradhan is presently working as an assistant professor (Botany) in School of applied Sciences, Centurion University of Technology and Management. Apart from this, he is also persuing his doctoral research on diversity, distribution and ethnomedicinal uses of Lichens from Centurion University of Technology and Management. He has completed his Master (Botany) from Department […]