Orophilous plant communities of the Pino-Juniperetea class, occurring in the Central and Eastern Mediterranean area, are examined. This vegetation is characterized by the dominance of trees and shrubs, mostly represented by conifers belonging to the genera Juniperus, Abies and Pinus. These communities are nowadays relegated to the supra- and oromediterranean belt, and show a fragmentary distribution, which is an evident proof of their relict connotation. The comparison among these communities, based on original and literature data, has highlighted a remarkable floristic and structural homogeneity, together with a series of geographical vicariances. From the phytosociological point of view, this justifies the arrangement of the aforesaid communities in the class Pino-Juniperetea Rivas-Martínez 1964, whose range is therefore extended to the whole Mediterranean basin. In the Central and Eastern Mediterranean area, the class is represented by the order Juniperetalia hemisphaericae, which comprises two new alliances: Berberidion aetnensis, restricted to the Central Mediterranean area, and Berberido creticae-Juniperion foetidissimae, distributed in the Eastern Mediterranean area. Both of them have been on its turn split up in some suballiances, to emphasize the floristic autonomy of some well-defined phytogeographical districts. The identified associations, many of them new to science, are examined from the nomenclatural, floristical, ecological, structural and chorological point of view.
BRULLO, S., GIUSSO DEL GALDO, G., GUARINO, R. (2001). The orophilous communities of the Pino-Juniperetea class in the Central and Eastern Mediterranean area. FEDDES REPERTORIUM, 112(3-4), 261-308.