Thermo-Mediterranean and pre-desert scrub
- EU Habitats Directive Annex I habitat type (code 5330)
- Priority habitat type: No
- Protected in 1208 Natura 2000 sites
Scrub formations characteristic of the thermo-Mediterranean zone. Included here are those formations, for the most part indifferent to the siliceous or calcareous nature of the substrate, that reach their greatest extension or optimal development in the thermo-Mediterranean zone. Also included are the numerous, strongly characterised, thermophile formations endemic to the south of the Iberian peninsula, mostly thermo-Mediterranean but sometimes meso-Mediterranean; in their great local diversity they are a western counterpart of, and sometimes approach in appearance, the mostly eastern Mediterranean phryganas, which, however, on account of their strong structural singularity, are listed separately under Pal. 33. (5410).
Pal. 32.21G - Genista fasselata brush
Brushes dominated by the tall, spiny Genista fasselata of very restricted distribution in the eastern Mediterranean basin.
Pal. 31.8B5p - Xerophilous Crataegus azarolus var. aronia scrub.
Low to medium height scrub of the semi-arid zone of Cyprus characterised by Crataegus azarolus var. aronia with an abundance of herbs and grasses and belonging to the Genisto-Ceratonietum. It develops at low to medium altitudes (300-500 m) on calcareous substrates.
Pal. 32.22 Tree-spurge formations: Stands of Euphorbia dendroides, remarkable tertiary relict of Macaronesian origin; they occur as a facies of the thermo-Mediterranean brushes of the Balearics, Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily, Isles Eolie, Egadi, Pelagi, Pantelleria, Crete, and, very locally, of those of the coasts of northern Catalonia, southeastern France, peninsular Italy and its islands, central Greece, notably on slopes facing the gulf of Corinth, the Peloponnese, the Aegean archipelagos, and enclaves of the Mediterranean periphery of Anatolia and the Levant. Particularly extensive and robust stands occur in Sicily, Sardinia and Crete where they may extend to relatively high altitudes. Very local formations in Mediterranean North Africa occupy the steep rocky slopes of some coastal capes and isolated inland sites (Ichkeul)
Pal. 32.23 Diss-dominated garrigues: Garrigues invaded and dominated by the high tussocks of Ampelodesmos mauritanica; typically thermo-Mediterranean, they also occur extensively in the meso-Mediterranean zone. They are most prevalent on the Tyrrhenian coast of central and southern Italy, in Sicily, in the Mediterranean zone and the less arid parts of the Saharo-Mediterranean transition zone of North Africa.
Pal. 32.24 Palmetto brush: Chamaerops humilis-dominated formations; other thermo-Mediterranean brushes or garrigues rich in the physiognomically important palmetto can be identified by a combination of this code and that of the other appropriate subdivision of Pal. 32.2. Palmetto brushes are best represented in the coastal areas of south-western, southern and eastern Iberia, the Balearics, Sicily and its satellite islands and Mediterranean North Africa, with more sporadic occurrences in the Guadalquivir basin, Sardinia, and the Tyrrhenian coasts and islands of peninsular Italy.
Pal. 32.25 Mediterranean pre-desert scrub. Periplocion angustifoliae, Anthyllidetalia terniflorae: Shrub formations constituting, with the halo-nitrophilous scrubs (Pal. 15.724) and the localised gypsum scrubs (Pal. 15.93), much of the natural and semi-natural vegetation of the arid zone of southeastern Spain (Almeria, Murcia, Alicante), a highly distinctive region of unique climatological, biological and landscape character within Europe, extremely rich in African and endemic species. Several of the most remarkable formations remain in only a few undisturbed localities and are gravely at risk . Similar formations occur in the upper arid (Mediterranean arid) zone of North Africa. Outposts of these communities also exist in Sicily, the Egadi islands, the Pelagie islands, Malta and Pantelleria.
Pal. 32.26 Thermo-Mediterranean broom fields (retamares): West Mediterranean formations dominated by retamas (Lygos spp.) or by large, non-spiny thermo-Mediterranean brooms of genera Cytisus and Genista, limited to the Iberian peninsula, the Balearics, Mediterranean North Africa, Sicily and its associated islands, the Cilento coast of Campania.
Pal. 32.441p - Spiny spurge garrigues: Euphorbia melitensis garrigues of Malta.
Plant text: Pal. 31.21G - Genista fasselata; Pal. 31.8B5p - Crataegus azarolus var. aronia; Pal. 32.22 - Euphorbia dendroides; Pal. 32.23 - Ampelodesmos mauritanica; Pal. 32.24 - Chamaerops humilis; Pal. 32.25 - Ziziphus lotus, Maytenus senegalensis var. europaeus, Periploca laevigata ssp. angustifolia, Salsola webbii, Sideritis foetens, Ulex argentatus ssp. erinaceus, Genista umbellata; Pal. 32.26 - Lygos sphaerocarpa, Lygos monosperma, Lygos raetam ssp. gussonei, Genista cinerea ssp. speciosa, Genista valentina, Genista spartioides ssp. retamoides, Genista spartioides ssp. pseudoretamoides, Genista haenseleri, Genista ramosissima, Genista ephedroides, Genista dorycnifolia, Cytisus aeolicus; Pal. 32.441- Euphorbia melitensis.
EU conservation status
Conservation status assesses every six years and for each biogeographical region the condition of habitats and species compared to the favourable status as described in the Habitats Directive. The map shows the 2013 assessments.
Species mentioned in habitat description
|Species scientific name||English common name||Species group|
|Ampelodesmos mauritanica||Flowering Plants|
|Chamaerops humilis||Flowering Plants|
|Cytisus aeolicus||Flowering Plants|
|Euphorbia dendroides||Flowering Plants|
|Genista dorycnifolia||Flowering Plants|
|Genista ephedroides||Flowering Plants|
|Genista haenseleri||Flowering Plants|
|Genista ramosissima||Flowering Plants|
|Genista umbellata||Flowering Plants|
|Genista valentina||Flowering Plants|
|Lygos monosperma||Flowering Plants|
|Lygos sphaerocarpa||Flowering Plants|
|Salsola webbii||Flowering Plants|
|Sideritis foetens||Flowering Plants|
|Ziziphus lotus||Flowering Plants|
Natura 2000 sites
Protected in the following Natura 2000 sites
Protected sitesPlease note the site map takes a while to display.
Mentioned in the following international legal instruments and agreements
Relation to habitat classifications
|Classification||Code||Habitat type name||Relationship type|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 200711||F5.55||Mediterranean pre-desert scrub||wider|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 200711||F5.56||Thermo-Mediterranean broom fields (retamares)||wider|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 200711||F5.5||Thermo-Mediterranean scrub||narrower|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 200711||F5.53||Ampelodesmos mauritanica -dominated garrigues||wider|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 200711||F5.54||Chamaerops humilis brush||wider|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 200711||F5.52||Euphorbia dendroides formations||wider|