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Keywords:

  • Braun-Blanquet approach;
  • Classification;
  • Ordination;
  • Plant community ecology

Abstract. Phytosociology is a subdiscipline of plant ecology that describes the co-occurrence of plant species in communities. Gradient analysis and classification are its complementary tools. Various peculiarities and anachronisms of Central European phytosociology conceal its similarity with Anglo-American approaches. Phytosociology deserves to be updated as a part of modern vegetation science that can build on a vast heritage of high-quality data and the tools to store and analyse them in ways that go beyond syntaxonomy. By providing a context to more specialized pure and applied research, it has a crucial role to play in understanding community structure, ecosystem functioning and biological evolution.