Ancient woodland plant species in a landscape park in central Poland

Józef Mitka, Janina Jakubowska-Gabara


A numerical analysis of the phytosociological relevés from ancient and recent woodland on a mesic forest site in central Poland was carried out. Three groups of forest stands were recognised: planted with Pinus, recent and ancient oak-hornbeam Tilio-Carpinetum. The species of ancient woodland occurred mainly in ancient oak-hornbeam forest stands, however some ferns: Dryopteris carthusiana, D. dilatata and D. filix-mas, and an orchid species Epipactis helleborine, are to be found mainly or exclusively in recent forests. The occurrence of ancient forest species in recent woods may be putatively explained by long-distance wind dispersal or by the thriving in situ in unrecognised small wood patches. Twelve ancient woodland indicators (i.e. 36% of a total number found in the region under study) occur exclusively in ancient woodland. It underlines the role of passive species protection in the maintenance of the regional species diversity.


ancient woodland indicators; Braun-Blanquet method; oak-hornbeam Tilio-Carpinetum; passive species protection; plantation forests

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