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Open AccessArticle

Geobotanical Study of the Microforests of Juniperus oxycedrus subsp. badia in the Central and Southern Iberian Peninsula

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Department. of Animal and Plant Biology and Ecology, Section of Botany, University of Jaén, Campus Universitario Las Lagunillas s/n, 23071 Jaén, Spain
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Department of AGRARIA, “Mediterranea” University of Reggio Calabria, Località Feo di Vito, 89122 Reggio Calabria, Italy
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Oficina del Cambio Climático, Consejería de Agricultura, Medio Ambiente y Desarrollo Rural, Junta de Castilla-La Mancha, C/Quintanar de la Orden, s/n. 45071 Toledo, Spain
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Department of Biodiversity and Environmental Management (Botany), Mountain Livestock Institute (CSIC-ULE), Faculty of Biological and Environmental Sciences, University of León, Campus de Vegazana s/n, 24071 León, Spain
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Department of Landscape, Environment and Planning, Institute for Mediterranean Agrarian and Environmental Sciences (ICAAM), School of Science and Technology, University of Évora (Portugal), Rua Romão Ramalho, nº 59, 7000-671 Évora, Portugal
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Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve, Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
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Centre of Marine Sciences (CCMAR), University of Algarve, Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(4), 1111; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11041111
Received: 15 October 2018 / Revised: 2 February 2019 / Accepted: 13 February 2019 / Published: 20 February 2019
We have studied Juniperus oxycedrus L. subsp. badia (H.Gay) Debeaux in the central and southern Iberian Peninsula, where the macrobioclimate ranges from Mediterranean-pluviseasonal-oceanic to Mediterranean-pluviseasonal-continental, and the thermotype from the thermo- to the supramediterranean. The relevés were taken following the Braun-Blanquet phytosociological methodology. A statistical treatment was applied to establish a separation among Juniperus communities. To understand the presence of Juniperus communities in territories dominated by species in the Quercus genus, we applied Thornthwaite’s formula to calculate potential evapotranspiration. The general cluster analysis clearly distinguishes two groups of plant communities and separates the different associations in each group. All the plant communities growing on rocky crests and in extremely steep sloping areas are significantly influenced by the soil. The ombroclimatic index does not explain the presence of plant communities influenced by substrate, so we proposed a new ombroedaphoxeric index which explains the presence of Juniperus communities in territories with a thermotype between the thermo- and supramediterranean. The areas of distribution of Juniperus species are expanding due to the spread of rocky areas; this phenomenon causes an increase in edaphoxerophilous areas and a decrease in climatophilous ones. We propose four new plant associations, with updated structures and floristic compositions. Efficient conservation is possible in both the territories studied (Spain and Portugal) through the implementation of specific cross-border cooperation projects. View Full-Text
Keywords: Juniperion lagunae; cross-border cooperation; landscape evolution; cluster analysis; conservation; sustainable development; territorial cohesion; ombroedaphoxeric index; phytosociology; SCI areas Juniperion lagunae; cross-border cooperation; landscape evolution; cluster analysis; conservation; sustainable development; territorial cohesion; ombroedaphoxeric index; phytosociology; SCI areas
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Cano, E.; Musarella, C.M.; Cano-Ortiz, A.; Piñar Fuentes, J.C.; Rodríguez Torres, A.; Del Río González, S.; Pinto Gomes, C.J.; Quinto-Canas, R.; Spampinato, G. Geobotanical Study of the Microforests of Juniperus oxycedrus subsp. badia in the Central and Southern Iberian Peninsula. Sustainability 2019, 11, 1111.

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