Water and Nutrient Limitations to Primary Production

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Primary production is typically low in holm oak (Quercus ilex L.) forests (Chap. 3). Water availability is likely to limit primary production in most Mediterranean terrestrial ecosystems given that summer drought is a characteristic trait of Mediterranean-type climates (di Castri 1981). Despite its deep roots (Chap. 4) and its relative tolerance to foliar water deficits, such water limitation also applies to holm oak (Chaps. 10 and 11).