Research Article
Urban Development Threatening Wild Plants in Doha City-Qatar: Ecophysiology is a Prerequisite for Ecological Restoration

B.T. Yasseen

Journal of Plant Sciences, 2011, 6(3), 113-123.

Abstract

Rapid disappearing of many coastal and inland habitats in the State of Qatar, due to the enormous activities of constructions, would put wildlife at real risk; urging scientists for environment conservation. This study was aimed to document the morphological features and the ecophysiological aspects of four wild plant species, Aeluropus lagopoides, Sporobolus spicatus, Ochradenus baccatus and Tetraena qatarense. Analyses included physical and chemical properties of soils and organic and inorganic contents of these plants were carried out. Although these plants are considered as xerophytes as the data of soil water content have shown; they might have well adapted to saline environments, since they live in soils of high salinity levels. A. lagopoides, S. spicatus and T. qatarense were living in soils of ECe ranged between 45 to 50 dS m-1, between 107 to 128 dS m-1 and between 12 to 187 dS m-1 respectively. O. baccatus, on the other hand, proved to be a typical xerophyte plant since it was never found in saline soils and survived water deficit as low as 4-12% field capacity. Considerable variations were found in all parameters studied especially in the electrical conductivity of the saturated soil extracts (ECe). Also, these species showed great variation in the organic components especially proline, soluble sugars and nitrogen, photosynthetic pigments and major elements. The data of trace elements, however, did not indicate clear differences. Such efforts can be considered as a prerequisite for successful ecological restoration, encouraging the decision makers to implement plans for restoration of vegetation.

ASCI-ID: 56-253

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