Knautia dinarica

Knautia dinarica (Murb.) Borbás

Dipsacaceae – Teasel family

Conservation status. Critically Endangered [CR B1ab(ii,iv)+2ab(ii); C1]. BDA.

Morphology and biology. Perennial herbaceous plant. Stem up to 60 cm high, erect, branched in upper half, with dense, patent hairs, with a basal rosette of leaves. Leaves opposite, broadly elliptical, with dense, soft appressed hairs, lower leaves slightly dentate, upper subentire. Capitula 2.5–4 cm in diameter, with linear involucral bracts. Florets pink or purple. Fl. VII–VIII, fr. VIII–IX. Reproduction by vegetative means and seeds.

Habitats and populations. Occurs on fresh soil in open places in the beech and coniferous vegetation belts or participates in herbaceous communities in the subalpine zone. Populations are fragmented and with a low number of individuals.

Distribution in Bulgaria. Rila Mts (along the path between Kirilova Polyana locality and Suhoto Ezero; in the valleys of Iliyna and Dupnishka Bistritsa rivers); 1500–2200 m alt.

General distribution. W Balkan Peninsula and SW Italy.

Threats. Isolated populations – localities are in the eastern periphery of the area of distribution of the species; hybridization with closely related species; trampling by tourists; restricted distribution.

Conservation measures taken. The species is protected by the national Biodiversity Act. The localities are within the borders of Rila National Park and Rilski Manastir Nature Park and in sites of the European ecological network Natura 2000 in Bulgaria.

Conservation measures needed. Detailed study of the area and number of individuals of the populations, biology and ecology of the species and threats; monitoring of the vulnerable localities; collection of seeds for the National Seed Genebank in Bulgaria.

References. Urumov 1935b; Ehrendorfer 1976.

Author: Stoyan Stoyanov

Knautia dinarica (distribution map)

Knautia dinarica (drawing)