Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment

Vol 8, Issue 1,2010
Online ISSN: 1459-0263
Print ISSN: 1459-0255

Conservation of crops’ wild relatives in two contrasting areas in Jordan: Current status and rehabilitation options


Mohammed Ajlouni 1*, Ahmad El-Oqlah 2, Ahmed Amri 3, Saba J. Goussous 4

Recieved Date: 2009-10-17, Accepted Date: 2010-01-03


Botanical surveys were performed over the years 2000-2004 in two areas in Jordan with contrasting ecosystems: Ajloun, a mountainous area with dry sub-humid Mediterranean climate and Muwaqqar, a dry semi-desert rangeland. Quantitative and qualitative analysis on plant species were conducted with emphasis on target species including wild relatives of wheat and barley. Assessment of threats to the survival of these species was carried out in both areas. Species richness in these areas corresponded with their ecosystems. In Muwaqqar, species richness was low, with all species were herbaceous and mostly are non target. Target species predominantly consisted of: Poa bulbosaHordeum murinum, and Allium spp. Species found at Muwaqqar are highly valuable and can provide genetic resources of good attributes for adaptation to drought and other adverse effects of climate change. Ajloun showed a higher degree of species richness. These were predominantly herbs with target species being lowest. Of these species, Trifolium and Medicago spp. were common. Wild fruit trees were scarce in Ajloun. However, wild cereals were common in most of this area’s sites reaching nine species total. Of these Avena sterilis, P. bulbosa and Triticum dicoccoides were highest in plant density. Both Ajloun and Muwaqqar areas were affected by various degradation factors. However, heavy grazing and land reclamation were common in most sites. Plans for in situ conservation and sustainability of these species were presented including soil conservation measures, water harvesting structures, participatory breeding, crop rotation, deferred grazing, and community-based improvement and management. These options were tested with full participation of local communities and key stakeholders and will be monitored and evaluated on five year interval. In addition to that the experimental station at Muwaqqar was chosen to educate local community as well as demonstrate the rehabilitation options of the degraded lands.


Jordan, Mediterranean, dryland, species richness, threats, wild relatives, cereals, ecosystem, agro-biodiversity, conservation

Journal: Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment
Year: 2010
Volume: 8
Issue: 1
Category: Agriculture
Pages: 234-239

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