Floristic and structural differentiation between gardens of primary and secondary residences in the Costa Brava (Catalonia, Spain)

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Urban sprawl along the Mediterranean coast is characterized by single-family houses and domestic gardens. Many new residences are secondary homes for socio-demographically diverse tourists. We explore the differences between the residence types in terms of their garden structures and plant compositions using socioeconomic and legacy attributes. Outdoor areas of 245 primary and secondary homes were investigated to determine plant compositions, land cover and household characteristics. Then, the outdoor land cover was compared between the two residence types. Vector fitting in ordination space assessed the influences of socioeconomic and legacy effects on plant compositions. Finally, generalized linear models (GLMs) assessed the influence of these variables on garden structures. Relevant differences exist in the plant compositions of primary and secondary residences. Furthermore, secondary residences have larger areas of trees, shrubs, flowers and swimming pools, while vegetable gardens are more common at primary residences. Overall, socioeconomic effects appeared to strongly constrain the features of household gardens ​
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