The most common roadside vegetation, what can be seen on the M-30?

Publicado el 25/11/2019
Planta carretera

The vegetation on Spanish roads plays a valuable role. The presence of vegetation on roadsides helps to prevent environmental problems such as soil erosion, water pollution, uncontrolled dumping or air pollution.

Types of vegetation used on the M-30

Around the M-30 there is quite a lot of vegetation. However, not all stretches of the road have the same type. This is not random, it is due to very careful forest and agrarian planning. That is why, depending on the stretch of road you are on, you will come across two types of areas on the M-30:

Vegetation-free areas

Road safety laws require the effects of shade or falling leaves on the road to be reduced to a minimum. Many other factors must also be taken into account, such as environmental impact, lack of visibility and possible landslides. That’s why you will come across some vegetation-free areas.

Plantable areas

Plantable areas also have different characteristics depending on the stretch of road, always in accordance with road safety conditions. As a result, there are two types of plantable areas along the roadsides and median strips of the entire M-30:

  • Shrubbed areas: generally composed of oleanders, brooms, rockrose, abelias and alder.
  • Treed areas: where the most common types are elm trees, tree of heaven, Arizona cypress, ficus and pine trees.

Criteria for choosing the type of vegetation used along the road

Planning which plants to use on urban and semi-urban roads such as the M-30 requires careful preparation, combining safety regulations with environmental benefits.

  • It is possible to plant the vegetation strategically in order to increase road safety. In some sections where, at dawn or dusk the sun shines directly on the front windshield, its shadow can prevent you from being blinded.
  • If that wasn´t enough, trees and shrubs prevent visual fatigue. In order to do this, they are distributed with certain irregularity. The vegetation around the M-30 should vary in volume and colour, respecting the pre-existing native species, to which new plantations have been added.
  • They are also an excellent visual framing tool. That is why, along curves the stretch is highlighted using trees. In the case of changes in elevation with small curves, the continuation of the road is indicated by the vegetation, which decreases as the road reaches its highest point, therefore making the change in elevation stand out more.
  • Lastly, the vegetation on the roadside plays another role: to combat erosion and soil fixation. In some stretches, trees have also been used to alleviate prevailing winds, which are particularly dangerous for small and light vehicles.

Relationship between the climate and the vegetation on the M-30

The M-30 has a wide range of landscapes, slopes and even climatic conditions along its route. But, as you can see, nothing is random. The trees and shrubs that are planted along the road have been carefully planned. This maximises road safety while taking care of the environment.

In other regions of Spain, for example, in the north, it rains more. This encourages hedges and species to be planted whose soil absorbs a lot of water, therefore preventing flooding. In addition, the trees have been planted at a certain distance from the road, to provide a space where snow can lie.

Emesa is responsible for the maintenance of the vegetation, paying special attention to the detection of irrigation and fertilisation needs, symptoms of diseases and pests, and affects on visibility. Its maintenance work includes mowing in non-plantable areas and pruning in plantable areas.

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