Mediterranean gorse (Ulex parviflorus)
Species: Ulex parviflorus Pourr.
Common names: Mediterranean gorse; aliaga, aulaga, tojo (Spanish); gatosa (Catalan); Ajonc de Provence (French)
Brief description: shrub, up to 2 m tall. No leaves, they are converted to spines. It retain standing dead branches. Yellow flowers. Small pods with one to three seeds dispersed explosively at the beginning of the summer.
Distribution: western Mediterranean basin: Spain, France, North Africa.
Habitat: fire-prone shurblands
Regeneration: Does not resprout but it recruits well after disturbances, especially after fire when high soil temperatures break seed dormancy and induce germination.
Interactions: Predispersal seeds predation by Exapion fasciolatum
Uses and overuses: It is a very flammable plant and was used in the past to heat ovens. Currently it is considered a problem for fire and fuel management.
- García Y., Castellanos M.C. & Pausas J.G. 2016.
Fires can benefit plants by disrupting antagonistic interactions.
Oecologia 182, 1165–1173.
- Moreira B., Castellanos M.C., Pausas J.G. 2014.
Genetic component of flammability variation in a Mediterranean shrub.
Molecular Ecology 23: 1213-1223.
- Pausas J.G. & Moreira B. 2012.
Flammability as a biological concept.
New Phytologist 194: 610-613.
- Pausas J.G., Alessio G., Moreira B. & Corcobado G. 2012.
Fires enhance flammability in Ulex parviflorus.
New Phytologist 193: 18-23.
- Moreira B. & Pausas J.G. 2012.
Tanned or burned: The role of fire in shaping physical seed dormancy.
PLoS ONE 7(12): e51523.
- Baeza, M.J., Santana, V.M., Pausas, J.G. and Vallejo, V.R. 2011.
Successional trends in standing dead biomass in Mediterranean basin species.
Journal of Vegetation Science 22: 467-474.
- Moreira B., Tormo J., Estrelles E., Pausas J.G. 2010.
Disentangling the role of heat and smoke as germination cues in Mediterranean Basin flora.
Annals of Botany 105: 627-635.
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