A flora da Serra do Açor (Portugal)



Paulo Cardoso da Silveira


The first chapters of this study include the story of the previous botanical research made at the "Serra do Açor", the geographic description of this mountain system, and the evolution of its vegetation.

The catalogue of the vascular plant flora, prepared within this study, comprises 781 taxa, of which 96% are confirmed by our collections and on site observations, and 54% are new for the area. Among the novelties of this catalogue, the most important are: a new species for science (Arabis beirana), 5 new or scarcely cited species for the Portuguese flora (Trifolium vesiculosum, Acer campestre, Jurineahumilis, Ligustrum sinense e Erysimum lagascae) and 39 provincial novelties (e.g. Festuca summilusitana, simultaneously new for BB and BL). Another 45 taxa, scarcely cited, rare or disjunct are to be pointed out. The chorology, taxonomy, nomenclature, morfology or ecology of several taxa are also commented. At the end of this large chapter the floristic and taxonomic diversity of the "Serra do Açor" are compared with the data given by Pereira Coutinho for the Portuguese flora.

A phitogeographic analysis based on chorologic elements, biological forms and phenologic behaviour was tried out, of which we must stress out the strong eurosiberian influence on the flora of Serra do Açor, in spite of the dominance of the Mediterranean element. A strong similarity between the "Serra do Açor" and several central-west Iberian provinces was also verified. These provinces share many endemic elements and an intermediate eurosiberian/mediterranean climatic and floristic behaviour. While trying to explain the origin of the flora of this mountain system, the most probable migratory paths used by the eurosiberian, Mediterranean and endemic elements on the Iberian Peninsula are proposed.

In the two final chapters of this work a description of the main vegetal formations and several comments and proposals concerning the conservation of the flora of the "Serra do Açor" are presented.

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