Floristic Composition of the Plant Cover at Surt Region in Libya

Elsayed M. Ali Nafea



The goals of the present study were to record and document the floristic composition of the plant cover at Surt region in Libya during spring 2010 to summer 2011 and to use the obtained data in the sustainable development of Surt region. The flora of coastal habitats at Surt, Libya (salt marshes, sand dunes and non cultivated sandy lands) comprises 231 species, related to 147 genera and belonging to 37 families. Among the recorded species 123 annuals, 105 perennials and 3 biennials, family Poaceae comprises 27 species (11.69%),both of Asteraceae and Fabaceae includes 26 species for each (11.26%) these three families were the main leading families representing collectively about 34.21% (79 species) of the total number of the recorded species in the study area. The coastal habitats in the Mediterranean coast of Surt are characterized by their specific floristic composition and dominant communities where the salt marsh habitat was represented by 66 species and dominated by: Suaeda pruinosa Lang cover percentage (90%), Arthrocnemum macrostachyum (Moric.)K. Koch (85%), Halocnemum strobilaceum (Pall.) M. Bich. (85%), Tamarix nilotica (Ehrenb.) Bunge (85%), Zygophyllum album L. (75%). On the other hand the sand dune habitat was represented by 143 species and dominated by Echinops spinosus L. (80%), Moltkiopsis ciliata (Forssk) I.M. Johnest.(80%), Calotropis procerra W. T. Aiton (77%), Panctarium maritimum L.( 75% ), Silene succulenta Forssk (75%). Heliotrobium curassavicum L. (40%). The non cultivated sandy land was represented by 90 species and dominated by: Chenopodium murale L. (85%), Bassia indica L. (85%) Amaranthus graezicans L. (80%), Cynanchum acutum L. (75%). The most common life forms were the Therophytes which represented by 141 species (61%) of the total recorded species followed by Cryptophytes 32 species (13.9%). Hemicryptophytes and Chamaephytes were represented by 24 species (10.3%) and Phanerophytes 10 species (4.3%). This study is considered as the pioneer study at Surt area and may be fruitful in further studies and in sustainable development of Surt.

Key words: Flora, salt marsh, sand dunes, soil, life forms, costal habitats, Surt, Libya.

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