Natural values of vegetation in non-forest habitats of the Kaczawa Foothills pre-selected as a special protection area Natura 2000.
This study wad conducted to make an inventory and evaluation of selected non-forest habitats of the Kaczawskie Foothills and Mountains in Poland, preliminarily classified as the area of Natura 2000 (symbol PLH 020037). In the route studies, the structure of land use and of farmlands was determined and then in grassland sites chosen with the GPS phytosociological relevés were taken with the use of Braun-Blanquet's method. Collected material was the basis for establishing phytosociological status based on 6-grade Braun-Blanquet's scale of cover-abundance. It was found that the flora within the study area was dominated by field crops and grasslands covered only a marginal part of the area being mostly an effect of abandoned arable lands. Among communities of meadow vegetation, 10 phytosociological units were distinguished. The most valuable ones included phytocoenoses classified as Arrhenatheretum elatioris association and Poa pratensis-Festuca rubra community. Ruderal vegetation was represented by Convolvulo-Agropyretum, and wetland vegetation - by Phragmitetum australis. Due to difficulties with exact classification of some vegetation patches, they were classified as communities of one dominating species. They included the communities of Solidago canadensis, Holcus mollis, Holcus lanatus and of Filipendula ulmaria. It is suggested that only the communities with Poa pratensis-Festuca rubra may be considered as protected habitats. Centaurium erythraea is the species under strict protection, while Laserpitium prutenicum and Bromus secalinus are the threatened species. It is concluded that the study area only partially fulfills the criteria of Natura 2000 sites.