Helleno-Balkanic riparian plane forests

Quick facts

EUNIS habitat type code T1491

Description (English)

Platanus orientalis gallery forests of Greek and southern Balkanic watercourses, temporary rivers and gorges; they are distributed throughout the mainland of Greece and its archipelagoes, extending north to Albania, the southern North Macedonia and the valleys of southern Bulgaria, colonizing poorly stabilised alluvions of large rivers, gravel or boulder deposits of permanent or temporary torrents, spring basins, and particularly, the bottom of steep, shady gorges, where they constitute species-rich communities. The accompanying flora may include Salix alba, Salix elaeagnos, Salix purpurea, Alnus glutinosa, Cercis siliquastrum, Celtis australis, Populus alba, Populus nigra, Juglans regia, Fraxinus ornus, Alnus glutinosa, Crataegus monogyna, Cornus sanguinea, Ruscus aculeatus, Vitex agnus-castus, Nerium oleander, Rubus spp., Rosa sempervirens, Hedera helix, Clematis vitalba, Vitis vinifera ssp. sylvestris, Ranunculus ficaria, Anemone blanda, Aristolochia rotunda, Saponaria officinalis, Symphytum bulbosum, Hypericum hircinum, Calamintha grandiflora, Melissa officinalis, Helleborus cyclophyllus, Cyclamen hederifolium, Cyclamen repandum, Cyclamen creticum, Galanthus nivalis ssp. reginae-olgae, Dracunculus vulgaris, Arum italicum, Biarum tenuifolium, Brachypodium sylvaticum, Dactylis glomerata and may be rich in mosses, lichens and ferns, among which Pteridium aquilinum is often abundant. Various associations have been described, reflecting regional and ecological variation in the composition of the undergrowth. The plane tree galleries are particularly well represented along the Ionian coast and in the Pindus; other important local complexes exist in Macedonia, in Thrace, around the Olympus massif, in the Pelion, in the Peloponnese, particularly in the Taygetos, where luxuriant gorge forests reach 1300 metres, in Euboea and in Crete; local, distinctive, representatives occur in other Aegean islands, such as Rhodes, Samos, Samothrace, Thasos. Restriction to gorges is increasingly pronounced towards the south.

Source: EUNIS habitat classification

Vegetation types

Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)

Not available

Species mentioned in habitat description

Flowering Plants Salix alba
Species scientific name English common name Species group
Salix alba Flowering Plants

Other classifications

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type
EUNIS Habitat Classification 2007 (revised descriptions 2012) G1.381 Helleno-Balkanic riparian plane forests same
For relation to plant communities (syntaxa), see Vegetation types


Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type Comment
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200410 G1.381 Helleno-Balkanic riparian plane forests same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200308 G1.381 Helleno-Balkanic riparian plane forests same
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