Abstract. Vegetation, water table depth and water chemistry of 16 peatlands in the southern Alps, Italy, were analysed in 115 sample plots. A poor‐rich gradient could be detected along the first axis of a partial Detrended Canonical Correspondence Analysis. Both vegetation and hydrochemistry vary gradually along the gradient. Vascular plants have much broader niches along the gradient than bryophytes. Mosses (except Sphangnum) and hepatics have narrower niches than Sphagnum. The various species of Sphagnum segregate more clearly from each other along the moisture gradient than along the poor‐rich one. The positions of species optima along the latter gradient largely reflect the ecological preferences of mire plants in peatlands with respect to nutrient status.
Journal of Vegetation Science – Wiley
Published: Apr 1, 1995
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