|Abstract in English:|
Shrubs have an important role in urban landscape, mainly as border elements and for biodiversity conservation. In the “Regolamento del verde” of many Italian municipalities the use of autocthonous species is highly recomended but such tool is still poorly used by administrations of coastal towns of Mediterranean area. Moreover the use of autocthonous shrubs in the urban green is usually restricted to a little number of species: a preliminary survey in four towns (Sanremo, Livorno, Bari, Palermo) showed that only oleander, dwarf palm, laurel, Teucrium fruticans and Tamarix spp. are significatively used. A low diffusion of autochtonous shrubs has been observed mainly in towns where in past times there was a strong introduction of exotic plants (Sanremo, Palermo). Such situation contrasts with the fact that the flora of Mediterranean maquis offers a large number of species with different morpho-phenological characteristics (height, colour, flowering period) useful in urban green design and suitable for low input maintanance. A list of species with high ornamental value, landscape significance and drought resistance is reported on the basis of the experience of the authors on cultivation of native flora species, some of them endemic.