Limitation of the recruitment of Pinus nigra in a gradient of post-fire environmental conditions

Jose Luis Ordónez, Sandra Franco, Javier Retana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Pinus nigra subsp. salzmannii is a pine species that regenerates quite well under its own canopy but has difficulty regenerating after fire. This study analyzes, by means of greenhouse and field experiments, the pattern of seed germination and seedling establishment of P. nigra in a gradient of post-fire environmental conditions. The results obtained in the controlled conditions experiment of cover effects in the absence of vegetation interference indicate that seed germination and seedling survival and growth of P. nigra attained their maximum values under high cover levels. In the field, seed germination and seedling survival of P. nigra were considerably lower than in the experiment outdoors but also followed to a large extent the cover gradient. However, there were differences among microhabitats depending on the type of vegetation present. In general, the behaviour of P. nigra is more similar to that of shade-tolerant species, such as oaks, than to low-altitude Mediterranean pines, because the establishment of P. nigra seedlings is improved under high cover conditions. As these conditions are usually lacking in recently burned areas, the regeneration of this species is strongly limited after fire. The difficulty in recovering after fire of P. nigra forests confirms that they require specific conservation measures to prevent their disappearance in the short term.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)296-304
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004


  • Cover gradient
  • Fire
  • Post-fire conditions
  • Seed germination
  • Seedling survival


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