Journal of Mountain Science

, Volume 13, Issue 8, pp 1375–1386 | Cite as

The influence of environmental variables on distribution patterns of Irano-Turanian forests in Alborz Mountains, Iran

  • Hooman RavanbakhshEmail author
  • Alireza Moshki


Topographic and edaphic variables are the main ecological factor determining species spatial variability on mountainous forests. A field study was performed in central Alborz to investigate how the edaphic and topographic parameters can affect the tree and shrub communities. Initially, 27 forest stands were identified and the homogeneous units were separated regarding physiognomy. In each single homogeneous unit, one random sample plot (1000 m2) and totally 43 plots were established. In each plot, the presence and abundance of all trees and shrubs were recorded and four soil samples were taken from depths of 0-5 and 5-20 cm. Concerning classification results, eight different forest communities were identified. The lowest and highest soil pH values were observed in Malus orientalis and pistacia-Amygdalus communities, respectively. The water saturation percent of pure- and mixed Juniperus excelsa and Rhus coriaria was the highest amongst communities. The clay content was the highest in pure J. excelsa. The 0-5 organic matter and Nitrogen content in mixed J. excelsa were significantly higher than pure J. excelsa and other communities. The CCA (Canonical Correspondence Analysis) results indicated that the altitude, precipitation, pH, EC, SP, clay and CaCO3 are the most important factors determine the distribution of trees and shrub in central Alborz


Irano-Turanian Mountainous woodlands Multivariate analysis Species-environment relationship 


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Copyright information

© Science Press, Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, CAS and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Desert StudiesSemnan UniversitySemnanIran

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