German tamarisk

Habitat: Wild river Lech
Plant species: pioneer plants

German tamarisk

The German tamarisk(Myricaria germanica) is a real survival specialist on the Tyrolean Lech. It belongs to the tamarisk family and can grow up to 2 m high. With its huge root system, it is firmly anchored in the gravelly soil.

Floods cause problems for many other plants. The German tamarisk needs them to survive. If a flood passes over it, it can bend with its elastic branches under the flowing water masses without suffering major damage. As a character species of an alpine riverine floodplain, the German tamarisk depends on regular relocation by floods. These sites are poor in nutrients and characterized by high dryness at normal water levels. The German tamarisk loves light and sun. Without redistribution of the gravel areas, it is overgrown by alders and pines.

German tamarisk used to be widespread along rivers, but today it has become a unique jewel. Regulations and restructuring in the river system have destroyed its dynamic habitat over a large area. Its natural habitats have become very rare. Together with shrub willows such as lavender or purple willow, it forms the plant community willow-tamarisk scrub.

In the Northern Alps, the last large stands of the German Tamarisk are located at the Tyrolean Lech, at the Upper Isar and at the Halblech.

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