Sustainable landscaping with Prunus

K. Karlović, N. Jeran, D. Dujmović Purgar, V. Židovec, S. Bolarić, A. Vokurka
Nowadays, serious changes of ecological balance in the global ecosystem have significant impact on the human population, influencing their socio-economic status in both, rural areas, and big metropolitan zones. In such circumstances sustainability becomes an inevitable principle that should be applied in all aspects of civilization, human activities and its interactions with the environment. Sustainability is a complex concept that involves a myriad of ecological, environmental, socio-economic, and technical factors, including their interdependence. Therefore, it includes the principles that should be applied in residential landscaping as a part of the strategy of holistic urban planning. The genus Prunus encompasses a wide range of species and cultivars that can be used as landscaping plants due to their high ornamental, but also their ecological values. The majority of them are traditionally used as fruit species, some have medicinal value or can be used for erosion control. In this way the genus Prunus offers landscaping potential for both, urban and rural sustainable landscapes. The goal of this paper is to evaluate landscaping potential of wild native edible Prunus taxa, but also cultivated species used as fruit trees, and propose their ornamental function as a structural part of cultivated/urban landscapes. We evaluate characters of potential ornamental value of Prunus species, such as: habitus, foliage, flowers, change in autumn color, phenological dynamics, bark appearance, etc. Also, their ecological potential through erosion control, attraction of birds, insects and other species, and possible pharmaceutical values are described. The susceptibility of these taxa to pests and diseases, and their growing conditions as an important basis for developing ecological aspect of horticultural and landscaping sustainability are also discussed.
Karlović, K., Jeran, N., Dujmović Purgar, D., Židovec, V., Bolarić, S. and Vokurka, A. (2020). Sustainable landscaping with Prunus. Acta Hortic. 1288, 75-84
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2020.1288.11
multifunctional landscape, edible landscape, ornamental value, ecology, wildlife

Acta Horticulturae