Syntaxonomische Revision der sudmitteleuropaischen Buchenwalder Syntaxonomical revision of the beech forests of southern Central Europe
For beech forests of Central Europe (including the Illyrian region) a great number of different and more or less incompatible classification approaches can be found. In order to critically revise the syntaxonomy of Central European beech forests, a TWINSPAN analysis of 5815 relevés from all over the area (mostly compiled from literature) was made. The result corresponds with the classical conception of three main groups of beech forests: 1. thermophilous beech forests (Cephalanthero-Fagion), 2. mesophilous beech forests (Asperulo-Fagion) and 3. acidophilous beech forests (Luzulo-Fagion). Each of these groups can be further divided according to altitudinal, edaphic and geographic gradients. In the study area 25 associations are distiguished. Their floristical characteristics, site conditions and distribution are described in detail. The nomenclature of all syntaxa is discussed and revised. Regarding syntaxa above association level six suballiances are suggested two within thermophilous beech forests (Cephalanthero-Fagenion, Ostryo-Fagenion), three within mesophilous beech forests (Eu-Fagenion, Lamio orvalae-Fagenion, Lonicero alpigenae-Fagenion) and one within acidophilous beech forests (Luzulo-Fagenion). Alliances based only on geography, containing a multitude of ecological types of beech forests, do not well reflect the floristic patterns and should be abandoned.