Habitat Studies Identifying Potential Trees for Urban Paved
Environments: A Case Study from Qinling Mt., China
Henrik Sjöman, Anders Busse Nielsen, Stephan Pauleit, and Mats Olsson
Abstract: Trees in urban paved environments are highly exposed to heat, low air humidity, periods of critical water stress, high soil lime content and soil pH, limited soil volume, pollutants, and de-icing salts. Combined with the challenges of climate change and the threat of disease and pest infestations, this has led to considerable and persistent arguments for using a more varied range of trees, including stress-tolerant species, at urban paved sites. Extensive fieldwork was carried out in the Qinling Mountains, China, in a search for tree species suitable for urban paved sites in northern parts of central Europe and in adjoining milder parts of northern Europe (CNE-region), where tree species are exposed to seasonally dry and harsh conditions. The study identified habitats in the Qinling Mountain range that are similar to those at sites in paved environments, and analyzed the growth and performance of different tree species in these habitats. A total of 25 tree species representing 21 genera were found, of which 14 species were identified as specialist colonizers of warm, dry south-facing slopes where site conditions are similar to those in paved environments of the CNE-region.
Keywords: Habitat Studies; Selection; Site-Adapted Species Use; Urban Paved Sites; Woody Species