Phenetic data on over 600 heterotrophic bacteria from green leaves of s24 were collected and analysed using numerical taxonomic methods. Marker strains representing 60 taxa were included in the analyses. At similarity levels of 80 % or above, 74 % of the isolates were recovered in six major and 45 minor phena. Four of the major phena were equated with the taxa and the two unidentified phena contained pink, Gram-negative rods with polar flagella. Xanthomonads and pink chromogens formed high populations in May, xanthomonads and pseudomonads in July, xanthomonads in September and listeriae and staphylococci in October. It seems that despite the spatial proximity of leaves, litter and soil, each of these habitats contains independent bacterial communities with specific properties.


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