Landscape Ecology

, Volume 34, Issue 2, pp 203–225 | Cite as

Effect of landscape connectivity on plant communities: a review of response patterns

  • L. UroyEmail author
  • A. Ernoult
  • C. Mony
Review Article



Fragmentation in agricultural landscapes is considered as a major threat to biodiversity. Thus, ecological corridors are deployed at multiple scales to increase connectivity. However, there is limited consensus about their efficiency, especially for plants.


We assimilated existing knowledge to assess whether and how landscape connectivity impacts plant communities.


We reviewed published literature across more than 20 years, providing an overview on the influence of connectivity on plant communities.


We found that landscape connectivity has a varying and complex influence on the composition and diversity of plant communities (i.e. community taxonomic structure), due to the multiplicity of factors that modulate its effect. Our understanding of how of landscape connectivity impacts the dispersal of plants is improved by using biological traits (i.e. community functional structure). Finally, we showed that landscape connectivity promotes actual dispersal between connected communities.


This review emphasises the pertinence of trait-based and actual dispersal approaches to improve our understanding and ability to predict the effect of connectivity loss on plant communities, allowing us to identify new prospects for future research.


Plant communities Traits Seed dispersal Actual dispersal Ecological corridors 



This work was funded by the Fondation de France (BISCO project). We thank the two anonymous referees for their constructive work and remarks on the manuscript.

Supplementary material

10980_2019_771_MOESM1_ESM.docx (15 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 14 kb)


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.UMR CNRS ECOBIO, University of RennesRennes CedexFrance

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