The Flora

The Reserve is characterized by natural shrub and herbaceous vegetation consisting of species adapted to conditions of insolation, aridity, constant wind and marine aerosol typical of this carbonate platform. The cliff is colonized by halophilous plant associations among which some Limonium species predominate (Limonium sp. pl.), Salicornia fruticosa(Arthrocnemum fruticosum), Sea fennel(Crithmum maritimum), Horned poppy(Glaucium flavum).On the plateau that backs up to the coastline, dwarf palm(Chamaerops humilis) scrub, Europe’s only native palm, dominates. This plant is linked to folk traditions because of the use coastal Mediterranean communities made of some of its parts: braiding the mature, well-dried leaves made brooms, from which the dialect name “scupazzu” derives, while the younger leaves were used to make baskets, hats, fans, bags and other handicrafts.

The scrub also consists of specimens of Olive tree (Olea europea var. sylvetris), Lentiscus(Pistacia lentiscus), Female chamelium(Teucrium fruticans), Sicilian tea(Prasium majus), Stinging asparagus (Asparagusacutifolius), various species of Asparagus(Asparagus sp. pl. ), White asparagus(Asparagus albus), Ilatro(Phillyrea latifolia). In the innermost areas, the association with Olivastro prevails (Olea europea var. sylvestris),Euphorbia fruticosa(Euphorbia dendroides), Dwarf palm(Chamaerops humilis),Ephedra (Ephedra fragilis), Wild asparagus(Asparagus stipularis), Thorny oak(Quercus calliprinos); of the latter species, which has become rare in Sicily, there is only one specimen within the Reserve.

Insights into the flora at Cape Rama

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