The regeneration and management of woodlands in the Mediterranean needs particular attention: the role of plant cover is essential for mitigating desertification processes.
Forestation is often limited to a narrow number of species which are easy to grow in nurseries. This practice greatly reduces levels of biodiversity and it is even more worrisome with regards to shrubs and minor hardwood which are the greater part of the Mediterranean woody flora. Beside cedars and juniper, many other trees of economic and/or of ecological interest are present in Lebanese mountains. Restoring these ecosystems requires the use of dozens of plant species to rebuild strong and resilient ecosystems. Recent international research results highlighted the positive effects of biodiversity.
Unfortunately, there are few nurseries producing Lebanese native species. Learning how to propagate these ‘new’ plants properly, including those deserving a wider use as drought-tolerant, can be a great challenge as well as a powerful tool to combat desertification and enhance biodiversity.
Jouzour Loubnan took the initiative of creating the Laboratory for Seed Germination and Conservation (LSGC) dedicated to this purpose.