Practical ecological knowledge for the temperate reader.

Cytisus striatus - Portuguese broom

Family: Fabaceae (Pea family) [E-flora]

"Introduction: This potentially invasive broom, with densely long-hairy pods, has been collected once in North Vancouver (Lomer 6029 @ UBC). It is found in roadside clearings on Vancouver Island (Nanaimo, Coombs) and North Vancouver." [E-flora]

Status: Exotic [E-flora]

"Cytisus striatus (Hill) Rothm. is a shrubby legume endemic to the Iberian Peninsula that has colonized other parts of the world [28]. It grows in siliceous soils from 450–750 m a.s.l., avoiding cold distributions. In ecotonal areas, it can form loose mixed population with Cytisus balansae (Boiss.) Ball. The latter is well represented in the Iberian Peninsula and northern Morocco, forming dense populations on siliceous soils from 750–1300 m a.s.l. Both C. balansae and C. striatus have been reported to nodulate with Bradyrhizobium spp. [2,29,30]." [perez-fernandez et al.,2016]


Medicinal Use

Nitrogen Fixation

"Overall, these results support the initial hypothesis that the ability of the shrubby legume C. striatus to change sources of N plays a role in its distribution and that limitations of C. balansae to efficiently fix N2 has restricted its distribution. Similarly, the broader tolerance of cst to P and N concentrations in the soil account for its extended distribution. We have shown that C. striatus is the species that can make better use of any available source of N and at the time, is the one with the lowest carbon costs (at a constant photosynthetic rate). C. balansae plants are more reliant on inorganic sources of N, and the maintenance of nodules corresponds to the greatest carbon constructions costs, which represents a strong limit to its growth. Differences in the behavior of the two species and restricted ability to quickly and efficiency change the use of N might be the reasons why C. striatus continues to expand and C. balansae is restricted in its area of distribution." [perez-fernandez et al.,2016]


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