Plant Ecology

, Volume 186, Issue 2, pp 151–160

Spatial patterns in seed bank and vegetation of semi-natural mountain meadows

  • Ramón Reiné
  • Cristina Chocarro
  • Federico Fillat

DOI: 10.1007/s11258-006-9119-2

Cite this article as:
Reiné, R., Chocarro, C. & Fillat, F. Plant Ecol (2006) 186: 151. doi:10.1007/s11258-006-9119-2


Soil seed bank composition and vegetative spatial patterns were studied in four mountain meadow communities in the Broto Valley (N. Spain), in order to analyse the differences that might exists between the two life forms. Soil and vegetation samples were taken at 1 m intervals from 10 m × 10 m quadrats in each meadow in one-year study. The spatial distribution of species was analysed along with the calculation of an autocorrelation coefficient which takes account of the relative position of samples: (Moran’s I). The results indicate that the abundance of the majority of the species in the seed bank and in the vegetation are randomly distributed, the percentage of species with a clumped distribution only exceeds 35% in the vegetation of one meadow and none of the taxa identified showed a uniform spatial organisation. The species that were distributed in the seed bank in a clumped pattern in more than one meadow were those of the pioneer species (Anagallis arvensis, Centaurium erythraea, Lamium purpureum and Stellaria media). All of these formed long-term persistent seed banks but were absent in the established vegetation in these meadows. According to the results, there exist not only differences between the spatial distribution of the species present in the same community, but also, that some species change their pattern of distribution according to the life form and to the grassland type in which they are found.

Key words

AutocorrelationSoil seed bankSpanish pyreneesSpecies abundanceSpecies composition

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ramón Reiné
    • 1
  • Cristina Chocarro
    • 2
  • Federico Fillat
    • 3
  1. 1.Departmento de Agricultura y Economía Agraria. Escuela Politécnica SuperiorUniversidad de ZaragozaHuescaSpain
  2. 2.Departmento de Producción Vegetal y Ciencia Forestal. Escola Tecnica Superior d’Enginyería AgrariaUniversitat de LleidaLleidaSpain
  3. 3.Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología. Consejo Superior de Investigaciones CientíficasJacaSpain