Characteristics of the Arctic vascular plant flora.

ABA 2013 09 03 Characteristic 

Arctic Biodiversity Assessment (ABA) 2013.

Figure 9.3. Characteristics of the Arctic vascular plant flora.

Low diversity, species number less than 1% of the world fl ora
• 91 families, 430 genera, 2,218 species
• Few gymnosperms, angiosperms represent 96% of the fl ora
• Low species diversity per family, with 8 species-rich families
accounting for >50% of the fl ora (see above)
• Low species diversity per genus, with most species-rich genera
Carex (152), Salix (72), Oxytropis (58), Potentilla (50), Draba (41),
Ranunculus (40), Papaver (39), Poa (36), Saxifraga (35), Artemisia
(33), Puccinellia (31), Juncus (30), Pedicularis (29), Rumex (28), Astragalus
(28), Silene (24), Erigeron (24), Luzula (22) and Eriophorum (18)
• Around 5% endemic species, mainly Poaceae (24), Papaveraceae
(15), Brassicaceae (15), Fabaceae (14), and Asteraceae (6),
accounting for 70% of the endemic species fl ora
• Genera with relative high numbers of endemic species include
Papaver (15), Puccinellia (13), Oxytropis (11), Potentilla (8) and Draba
(8), accounting for 52% of the endemic species fl ora. Almost all are
forbs or grasses, a few sedges, woody species absent
• Coherent with high percentage of circumpolar species
• High polyploidy (allopolyploidy) levels, in particular in the northern
and longer glaciated areas
• Young with distinct phytogeographic history
• No strong influence by aliens
• Still native and with intact historical plant geography


Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) 

The data can be downloaded freely.

Users are requested to reference it source.

Meltofte, H. (ed.) 2013. Arctic Biodiversity Assessment. Status and trends in Arctic biodiversity. Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna, Akureyri.

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