PRESPES LAKES, Greece – A sight unique to the Prespes Lakes region is the small red carpet of velvety flowers that is laid around the lake each year, when hundreds of the endemic parasitic plants of the species Phelypaea boissieri are in bloom. The red blossoms, which are found nowhere else in Greece, are so beautiful that local residents in times past would pick them to decorate their homes.
The species was recorded in a new study on the flora of the National Park of Prespes held at various times between 2007 and 2016 with aim of recording and identifying all the plant taxa of the area, as well as to review the already recorded flora. The study was carried out on behalf of the Prespes Protection Association.
“According to the study, the flora of Prespes National Park includes over 1769 taxa, 610 of the which had not been recorded… in the first comprehensive record in 1985. Among others, it confirmed the presence of the endemic Balkan forest [species] Eryngium palmatum and the nitrophilous, shoreline [species] Oxybasis rubra, which were not included in the list of plants found in Greece as previous records of them had been considered or were, in fact, mistaken,” botanist Giorgos Fotiadis, one of a group of professors that carried out the new study, explained to the Athens-Macedonian News Agency.