Hesperis theophrasti

Hesperis theophrasti Borbás

Hesperis macedonica Adamović1

Brassicaceae – Cabbage family

Conservation status. Vulnerable [VU B1ab(ii,iii)+2ab(ii,iii)]. BDA. Balkan endemic.

Morphology and biology. Herbaceous biennial to perennial. Stem 10−60(80) cm. Basal leaves pinnatifid to nearly entire; cauline dentate, with 2-fid hairs. Inflorescence racemose. Flowers relatively large; petals 10–18 mm long, pink or reddish pink. Fruit a densely glandular siliqua. Seeds small, dark brown, in one row in each loculus. Fl. VI−VII, fr. VIII−IX. Insect pollination. Reproduction by seeds, dispersed through barochory.

Habitats and populations. Grows in dry, mostly stony places, in scrubs and forest glades. Populations are small, fragmented, consisting of single, scattered individuals and small groups of plants.

Distribution in Bulgaria. Vitosha Region (Lyulin Mt), Rila Mts, Thracian Lowland, Strandzha Mts; from 300 to 1300 m alt.

General distribution. Balkan Peninsula (Albania, Bulgaria, Greece, R Macedonia, Turkey-in-Europe).

Threats. Human economic activities, intensive agriculture and stock-farming in the species distribution area have negative effects on the population structure and reproductive potential and cause reduction of the area of occupancy.

Conservation measures taken. Protected species according to the national Biodiversity Act. Some localities are within protected territories (Rila National Park, Strandzha Nature Park) and sites of the European ecological network Natura 2000 in Bulgaria.

Conservation measures needed. Restriction of human economic activities in the localities of the species; deposition of seeds to the National Seed Genebank in Bulgaria; elaboration of technologies for ex situ cultivation of the species.

References. Dvorák 1966; Assenov 1970, 1984; Ančev 2001, 2007.

Authors: Mincho Anchev & Valentina Goranova

Hesperis theophrasti (distribution map)

Hesperis theophrasti (drawing)