Galanthus nivalis

Galanthus nivalis L.

Amaryllidaceae – Amaryllis family

Conservation status. Endangered [EN B1ab(ii,iii,iv,v)+2ab(ii); C2a(i)]. BDA.

Morphology and biology. Herbaceous bulbous perennial. Leaves 2, basal, in bud flat and parallel, 8–9 × 0.4–0.7 cm, linear. Scape bearing a single dropping flower. Perianth segments 6; the other 3 segments white, 15–25 mm long, obovate to oblong; the inner segments about twice shorter, oblong-obovate, nearly flat, with green patch only at apex. Stamens 6, in 2 rows. Ovary inferior, subglobose or ellipsoid, 3-locular. Seeds ellipsoid, with strophiole. Fl. I–IV, fr. IV−V. Insect and wind pollination. Reproduction by seeds and vegetative means.

Habitats and populations. Grows in scrubland, forests, rocky pastures, on alluvial soil by rivers; in the lowlands and lower mountain regions.

Distribution in Bulgaria. Black Sea coast (Balchik, Varna – near Aladzha Monastery, Burgas, Primorsko, from Ropotamo River mouth to Rezvaya River), NE Bulgaria (Obrochishte, Tsarkva, Tsarichino, Grozdyovo villages, etc.), Danubian Plain (Vidin, Orsoya village), Forebalkan (Belogradchik – in Venetsa locality), Balkan Range (Rakovitsa village), Znepolski region (region of Tran), Toundzha Hilly Country (Zidarovo village), Strandzha Mts (Vitanovo Strict Nature Reserve); up to 1500 m alt.

General distribution. C and SE Europe (Italy, Hungary, Poland, Ukraine, W Russia, Balkan Peninsula).

Threats. Intensive collection of the species for ornamental and medicinal purposes; touring activities; infrastructural development; trampling; agriculture; afforestation; natural disasters (fires); limited distribution and small population size; possibly low recruitment potential.

Conservation measures taken. Protected species by the Biodiversity Act. Some subpopulations are in Ropotamo and Vitanovo Strict Nature Reserves. Many localities are within sites of the European ecological network Natura 2000 in Bulgaria.

Conservation measures needed. Study on the population state, reproductive biology of the species and the factors affecting the population size (both area and number of individuals), and based on these studies adaptation of the conservation measures; collection of seeds for the National Seed Genebank in Bulgaria; ex situ cultivation of the species.

References. Jordanov 1964; Delipavlov 1968, 1971; Vassilev 1984; Pashaliev & Dimitrov 1995; Gussev et al. 1997; Sidjimova et al. 2003; Berkov et al. 2008; Sidjimova 2008.

Author: Lyuba Evstatieva

Galanthus nivalis (distribution map)

Galanthus nivalis (drawing)