search and information system
on vascular plants in Germany
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name description
Floristic status The floristic status tells whether a plant is native or alien to Germany. Regarding aliens, we distinguish between archaeophytes (immigrants before the discovery of the Americas) and neophytes (immigrants after the discovery of the Americas).
Evolutionary origin A taxon might have evolved naturally or due to human influence (anecophytes)
Region of origin The region of origin (evolution) is given for anecophytes
Endemism Endemic species are restricted to a confined area and not found anywhere else (i. e. endemism)
Mode of introduction Alien plants currently occurring in Germany arrived via different pathways or modes and for different reasons. As some species might have been introduced via several modes and/or several times, they will have several modes of introduction.
Time and region of first naturalization Region of naturalization states the first record of an alien plant outside human cultivation. Wherever possible, the location of the first naturalization in Germany is provided. When older dates from Central Europe are known, they will be presented additionally.
Degree of naturalization Degree of naturalization is presented after SCHROEDR (1969). This concept refers to the natural state of a vegetation unit in which a plant species grows. We present the maximum degree of naturalization in Germany, i. e. the level closest to naturalness.
Chromosome number The plant genome is organized in chromosomes. Chromosome number, basic chromosome number and ploidy level are simple descriptive parameters for species and other taxa. They may change due to evolutionary steps like polyploidisation or aneuploidy. Chromosome parameters are important for taxonomy, evolution ecology and biogeography. Data are given for basic chromosome number, chromosome number of the sporophyte, its ploidy level and ploidy type, whether the number is known from Germany and which is the most common number.
DNA content The DNA content per genome is constant and characteristic within species. The C-value (1C-value) is the DNA amount of the unreplicated haploid chromosome complement (pg). Within species or narrow taxa the DNA content is linearly correlated with chromosome number. Aneuploidy or extra chromosomes lead to an increase in DNA content. DNA content is correlated with a number of physiological and ecological traits. Data are given for DNA content (2C-value), chromosome number of the investigated specimen and information about quality and source of data.
Phylogeny code A letter code which identifies the position of a species within the phylogeny. All branches with a common root are given successive letters A, B, C…; the sum of all letters at each bifurcation beginning from the root is the phylogenetic code. It can be used to calculate phylogenetic independent contrasts with the program CAIC.
Life form The life form refers to the vertical position of vegetative buds (as an adaptation to uncomfortable seasons) (Raunkiaer 1934, 1937). Obviously life form and growth form show certain parallels (e.g. macrophanerkophytes - trees, nanophanerotphytes - shrubs).
Life span The life span refers not only to the classes of actual life span (annuals, biennials, perennials), but also to the number of generative reproductions. Here we distinguish if a species flowers and fruits only once and then dies or if it may repeatedly flower and fruit
Vegetative propagation Besides sexual (generative) propagation and dispersal with generative diaspores, many plant species are able to propagate and disperse asexually (vegetatively).
Storage organs The occurrence of storage organs is usually associated with the ability of vegetative propagation and dispersal. Special storage organs may not only store nutritions but also water.
Shoot metamorphoses Shoot metamorphoses are modifications of the shoot. However this does not simply mean a transformation of the shape during growth and ageing, but is the development of different structures for special tasks (e.g. dispersal, storage) from comparable tissues.
Root metamorphoses Root metamorphoses are modifications of the shoot. However this does not simply mean a transformation of the shape during growth and ageing, but is the development of different structures for special tasks (e.g. dispersal, storage) from comparable tissues.
Rosettes Rosettes develop through the absence of shoot elongation between the nodes. Thus, the leaves grow densely (usually) at the shoot base.
Climbing Different modes of climbing are given.
Nutritional adaptations The type of nutrition refers to parasitic or mycotrophic (fungi act as source for organic compounds) acquisition of nutrients or carnivory (trapping of small animals).
Leaf persistence "Leaf persistence" is a coarse classification of how long a leaf persists on a plant from emergence until cast.
Leaf anatomy "Leaf anatomy" reflects main structures within a leaf to fulfil specific tasks (e.g. aeration, water storage, supporting tissues).
Leaf form We provide a brief overview about different leaf forms.
Flowering phenology Flowering phenology refers to the start, end and length of flowering period (given in months) that are typical for Germany.
Symphenological Groups Phenological data for flowering are not given in months but refer to groups of coflowering species which are characteristic for specific seasons.
Type of reproduction Reproduction can be by seed or vegetatively.
Type of seed production Seed production is either sexual (amphimicitc) or apomictic. In amphimixis, one of the pollen sperm nuclei unites with the egg cell and form the zygote. The other unites with the polar nuclei and forms the endosperm
Type of apomixis Apomixis can be pseudogamous or autonomous. In pseudogamy, pollination is necessary, in autonomous apomixis no pollination is needed for seed production
Dicliny Dicliny, is the spatial separation of sexes with male and female organs on different flowers and/or plants. Hermaphroditic flowers with male and female organs are monocline.
Dichogamy Dichogamy is the temporal separation of sexes: in protogyny the female function precedes the male function, in protandry the male function precedes the female function. In homogamy or adichogamy both functions occur at the same time.
Heterostyly Heterostyly is the formation of styles and filaments of different length on different plants which is often accompanied by differences in pollen size and pollen surface. Heterostyly often coincides with intramorph incompatibility and acts as outcrossing mechanism.
Self-sterility and self-incompatibility Presence and strength of self-incompatibility of self-sterility. Self-incompatibility is defined as the failure of production of viable zygotes after selfing. It is a genetically controlled mechanism of self recognition and rejection of self-pollen prior to fertilization of the egg cell. "Self-sterility" is defined similarly but without a defined mechanism.
SI mechanism Genetic/physiological mechanism of SI
Pollen vector Pollen vector or type of pollen transfer. Pollination is independent of fertilization.
Breeding system The breeding system is defined by the origin of gametes that unite to form offspring. Breeding system in plants range from obligate outcrossing (xenogamy) over mixed mating systems (facultative xenogamy, facultative autogamy) to selfing (autogamy) and automixis (only in ferns)
P/O ratio Ratio of number of pollen to number of ovules per flower
Floral rewards Nectar, pollen, oil or deception provided by flowers that attracts insects
Flower color Flower colour or description of flower coloration
UV reflection of the flower UV refection in the periphery of the flower. Flowers often reflect UV light, which is important for flower recognition in insects. UV reflection may vary between central and peripheral parts of the flower leading to UV patterns.
Flower class after MUELLER MÜLLER (1881) classified the insect pollinated flowers into 9 classes. The main aim was to achieve grouping of pollinators. The nectariferous flowers were grouped according to the depth of nectar display in those with open (A), partly hidden (AB) and hidden (B, B´) nectar. Only rough groups of pollinators can be assigned to these groups, which differ in length of proboscis. Furthermore flowers with smaller pollinator range are grouped into e.g., bee (Hb), bumble bee (Hh), fly (D) and moth (Fn) flowers. Apart from these also morphological types are distinguished.
Flower type after KUGLER Flower type after KUGLER
Fruit type The fruit is defined here only as the fruit at the time of seed ripening. Remaining parts of the flower are treated as "additional structures" and are identified with the germinules. Fruits are categorized according to characteristics of seed maturation, pericarp or arrangement of the pericarp.
Diaspore type Generative diaspores (units of dispersal) may be seeds or can be imbedded in additional structures or additional structure can be attached to them.
Germinule type Generative germinules (units of germination) may be seeds or can be imbedded in additional structures or additional structure can attached to them.
Weights For diaspores and germinules, minimal, mean and maximal weight are given (in mg).
Sizes For diaspores and germinules, minimal, mean and maximal length, width and thickness are given (in mm).
Strategy type Ecological strategy type following the system of GRIME.
Grassland utilization indicator values Comparable to "Ellenberg's indicator values", we present a set of "indicator values for grassland species" which provide information on a species tolerance against trampling, mowing, grazing, as well as foraging value for cattle and deer.
Floristic zone and altitudinal level Floristic zones are the characteristic sequences of plant assemblages from the poles to the equator due to climatic factors. Within a floristic zone, a plant may grow in several altitudinal levels. These altitudinal levels are not defined by an absolute altitude but may differ according the floristic zone or the exposition. Primary drivers are climatic factors (as for the floristic zones).
Number of inhabited floristic zones The "Number of inhabited floristic zones" gives the number of floristic zones within the natural range of a plant species. "Southern temperate" and "northern temperate" are aggregated, as they are actually subzones of one zone.
Oceanity Oceanity reflects the amplitude of inhabited oceanic levels. It characterizes the range of a plant species from the coasts to the centres of the continents.
Floristic region "Floristic regions" are continents or parts thereof in which a species occurs. When parts of continents are provided (e.g. "Alps"), a species is restricted to this area.
Hemeroby Hemeroby is a measure of departure from naturalness. Habitats and vegetation types are classified along the hemeroby scale from ahemerob (natural) to polyhemerobic (non-natural). Sites without plant life are metahemerobic. BIOLFLOR indicates the amplitudes of hermeroby, so that all levels of hemeroby are indicated in which a plant species can occur.
Number of hemerobic levels The "number of hemerobic levels" is a measure of the amplitude of a species regarding hemeroby as it counts the hemerobic levels that a species inhabits.
Urbanity Urbanity reflects the affinity of plant species towards urban areas. According to the occurrences or gaps of species in cities the scale ranges from urbanophile (mainly in cities) to urbanophobe (rarely in cities).
Habitat List of habitats after HAEUPLER & MUER (2000) [only in German].
Class Englisch equivalent of a phytosociological unit after SCHUBERT, R., HILBIG, W. & KLOTZ, S. (2001).
  In this overview you can find all traits within the BioFlor-System.
By clicking on a trait you get the details of the selected trait.