Comparison of climate characteristics of Slovakia and Iraq as theoretical basic for study of woody plants introduction from Mediterranean to temperate zone.
Mediterranean-type climates have been defined: (1) Geographically, as climates similar to those found around the Mediterranean Sea; (2) Vegetationally, as climates where broadleaved evergreen sclerophyllous shrub lands (maquis, chaparral, matorral, macchia, fynbos, kwongam) are common or dominant; and (3) Climatically, as regions of summer drought and winter rainfall. Native plant species are very important source of adapted plant material especially when unfavourable climatic and soil conditions are present. These species are also more effective than non-native species in controlling soil erosion. Once established, since they are adapted to local dry conditions, their care is easer than non-native species. Mediterranean woody plants are very popular in central Europe countries in landscape and garden architecture as the composition element, also for oil, tea and as medical plants. These are the main reasons for the evaluation of the selected woody species introduction from the Mediterranean zone in the Middle East into Central European conditions of Slovakia (or the Czech Republic). From this reason were established experimental plots at the Botanical Garden of the Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra. The study area was planted by the following woody evergreen and deciduous species: Callistemon laevis Ball., Cupressus sempervirens L., Lagerstroemia indica L. Laurus nobilis L., Nerium oleander L., Pittosporum tobira L., Trachycarpos fortunei (HOOK.) H. WENDL., Viburnum tinus L., Vitex agnus-castus L., Zizyphus jujuba L. The climate of the Kurdistan Region is semi-arid continental: very hot and dry in summer, and cold and wet in winter. Mean highest temperatures range from 13-18°C in March to 39-43°C in July and August. On the upper plains there is two to three times as much rain as at Baghdad, the average annual rainfall rising from about 300 mm in the drier parts to 500 mm. In the forest zone of mountains the rainfall varies from about 600 mm to over 1200 mm. Slovak Republic belongs to the northern moderate climatic zone, with four seasons. The topography of Slovakia is very diverse and the altitude is also an important factor affecting the air temperature, rainfall, solar radiation and wind. The warmest and driest region of Slovakia is Podunajská nížina (Danube lowland) with an annual average temperature around 10.3°C and precipitation around 530 mm. The coldest places are mountains as the High and Low Tatras with the annual average temperature of 3-6°C with precipitation over 1600 mm. Climate comparison of both countries shows on relative convenient conditions for woody plants introduction on other.