The terrestrial flora of Cabo de Gata-Nijar Natural Park is made up of plants totally adapted to arid lands, with a great scarcity of water and vegetation.
In Cabo de Gata, given its peculiar climate and unique terrain conditions, with volcanic soils that do not support strong conditions for plants to take root, we find a weak vegetation capable of taking advantage of rainfall and edaphic vegetation (which does not depend on rainfall, adapting to the soil or hidden precipitations to survive) of great variety and wealth.
Endemic plants represent 40 percent of the thousand plant species found there. Six of them are exclusive to this Natural Park: Antirrhinum charidemi, Dianthus charidemi, Teucrium charidemi, Verbascum charidemi, Ulex canescens and Androcymbium europaeum.
Near Torregarcia Hermitage you can find formations of spinous plants, including the Ziziphus lotus, an extraordinary plant exclusive to Almeria that cannot be found in any other area of Europe.
Also standing out is the European fan palm (Chamaerops humilis), a symbol of the Natural Park, and the only native palm of the European continent.
Esparto, rosemary, Anthyllis cytisoides and thyme usually occupy the gaps left by European fan palms. There is an abundance of Tamarix africana, Nerium and some Olea europeana sylvestris and Pistacia lentiscus.
Other species are the Periploca laevigata, an example of North African Iberian vegetation, and the Caralluma europea, the only European plant that resembles cacti to survive in this type of arid environment.
In contrast to the aridity of the area, the wetlands are home to a high botanical richness: European Beachgrass, Salicornias, etc. In the dunes and sandy areas, the colonizing plants are those that dominate the landscape: Pallenis maritima, Sempervivum and Achillea maritima.