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Garigue and Macchie in Corsica . The tightly closed stands on the left and in front of the valley correspond to a maquis. The loosely standing low brush on the opposite slope is a garigue.

Garigue also Garrigue written (French Garrigue , Spanish Garriga , Italian gariga ) is an open Mediterranean heather formation at shallow soils, as Degradationsstufe the Macchie can be understood. It is particularly common in France (especially Corsica ), Italy (especially Sardinia ) and North Africa. It grows up to two meters high and has a rich plant population. The name is derived from the name of the southern part of the Cevennes , the Garrigue .


Characteristic plants of this type of vegetation are dwarf shrubs , for example

and geophytes , for example

In the plant-sociological system , garigue stands on soils poor in bases are classified in the class Cisto-Lavanduletea, those on calcareous soils are classified in the class Rosmarinetea officinalis. Phrygana and Batha eastwards from Italy are separated in the class Cisto cretici-Micromerietea julianae.


Garigue is created by intensive grazing of the maquis. The reduction process is promoted by fires, which the typical plants of the garigue survive better. Almost all typical species have special protective devices against grazing and fire. These are species with high levels of secondary plant substances (including many aromatic herbs ) or thorny and prickly species.

In addition, protection against extreme solar radiation in midsummer is important. Many species move in their aboveground organs during this time ( geophytes ) or die and their offspring survive the dry season as seeds ( therophytes ). Others have small and hard leaves or are covered with thick felted hair.

Various garigue vegetation stands are particularly worthy of protection according to the Habitats Directive of the EU and should be included in the Europe-wide system of protected areas "Natura 2000". The habitat type 5330 (thermo-Mediterranean bush formations and pre-deserts) is particularly relevant in the area . The habitat types are locally significant:

  • 1520 - Iberian plaster steppes (Gypsophiletalia)
  • 5140 - Formations of Cistus palhinhae on maritime heaths
  • 5410 - Western Mediterranean Phrygana (Astragalo-Plantaginetum subulatae) on rocky coasts
  • 5430 (33.7-9) - Endemic Phrygana of Euphorbio-Verbascion: populations of the Balearic Islands, Corsica and Sardinia rich in thorn cushion bushes and endemic species

Garigue and Phrygana

In the eastern Mediterranean , corresponding plant communities are known as Phrygana (Greece and Turkey) or Batha (Israel). But even there, certain plant formations are occasionally referred to as "garigue", namely advanced stages of succession with taller shrubs such as Calicotome villosa or Erica manipuliflora or with a higher proportion of potentially taller trees and shrubs such as Kermes oak ( Quercus coccifera ) or mastic bush ( Pistacia lentiscus ). A radical change of species or an adjustment to the species inventory of western Mediterranean garigues does not take place in the eastern Mediterranean.

Conversely, western Mediterranean stands with an accumulation of thorn cushion bushes, as they occur mainly in wind-exposed locations, are sometimes also referred to as Phrygana.


  • Jean-Michel Renault: La Garrigue - grandeur nature . - Barcelona: Les créations du Pélican 2000. ISBN 978-2-7191-0422-4
  • R. Di Castri, DW Goodall , RL Specht: Mediterranean type shrublands. Ecosystems of the World 11. Elsevier SPC Amsterdam, Oxford, New York, 1981. ISBN 0-444-41858-X

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Duden online: Garrigue, Garigue
  2. ^ Salvador Rivas-Martínez , F. Fernández González, J. Loidi Arregui, M. Lousa & A. Penas Merino: Syntaxonomical Checklist of Vascular plant communities of Spain and Portugal to Association Level. - Itinera Geobotanica 14, 2001: pp. 139-152.
  3. Salvatore Brullo, Pietro Mini Sale & G. Spampinato (1997): La classe Cisto-Micromerietea nel Mediterraneo centrale e orientale. - Fitosociologia 32: 29-60.
  4. a b European Commission Dg Environment (Hrsg.): Interpretation manual of European Union habitats EUR27 , 2007 ( PDF )
  5. Arne Strid, Kit Tan (Ed.): Flora Hellenica. Volume One (Gymnospermae to Caryophyllaceae) . Koeltz Scientific Books, Königstein 1997, ISBN 3-87429-391-2 .
  6. Niels Böhling: Studies on the ecological spatial structure on the Mediterranean island of Naxos (Greece) with special consideration of pointer plants. - Dissertationes Botanicae 230, 1994: Table 8

Web links

Commons : Garrigue  - collection of images, videos and audio files