Sunday, May 16, 2010

Niceland # 15 - Flora of Iceland

Lupinus nootkatensis: Nootka lupin is one of the taller and robust herbal flowering plants in Iceland. The vibrant purple nootka, or Alaskan lupine is quite common sight in Iceland.

It was introduced in 1945 to add nitrogen to the soil and anchor the soil to prevent erosion. As member of the pea family (Fabaceae, Papillionaceae section) it is able to fix atmospheric nitrogen (N2) into organic nitrogen by using specialized bacteria living symbiotically in their roots.  Iceland suffers from erosion and foliage loss is due largely to the extreme conditions of the environment, in particular the high winds. Lupine has since spread to other regions because of its high productivity.

No comments: