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About Jordan's Flora

Some 2200 vascular plant species have been recorded in Jordan so far. Around 7% of the native flora is considered to be endemic (Davis et al., 1994). The flora of Jordan has Mediterranean, Irano-Turanian, Saharo-Arabian and Sudanian elements. Alone for the latter, more than 300 plant species do not occur anywhere else in Jordan than in this floral realm, including trees such as Ziziphus spina-christi, Balanites aegyptiaca and Salvadora persica, or shrubs such as Ochradenus baccatus or herbs such as Cucumis prophetarum (Al-Eisawi, 1998).

The Jordan River Valley divides the country into two parts: the hilly West Bank with mainly sparse thorn scrub vegetation, and the East Bank and land to the east of the Dead Sea with dwarf shrub steppes with Artemisia, and deciduous dry forests with Amygdalus, Crataegus and Pistacia; and Pinus halepensis and evergreen oak forests including Quercus calliprinos to the north-east of the Dead Sea, above 700m; deciduous oak forests with Quercus aegilops at lower altitudes; juniper forests on the southern mountains above 1000 m. Extensive areas of saline marches are in the north and south of the Dead Sea, with Tamarix, Salsola and Atriplex (Davis et al., 1986).