Vegetation of Iran

Botanists believe that the current vegetation of this land is the result of the gradual infiltration of plant species from neighboring areas into the plateau and their change due to the great diversity that geographical altitude and climatic differences have required. Geographers and botanists have proposed different methods for classifying Iranian vegetation, but they all agree on one thing, and that is the great diversity that is observed in the country’s plants despite the climatic poverty. According to them, there are over 10,000 species of plants in Iran, which are endemic and the rest are related to plants in the Caucasus, Asia Minor, Saudi Arabia, Africa and India. The land of Iran can be divided into 6 regions in terms of plant groups:

  1.  The area of ​​northern humid broadleaf forests, which are located between the Talesh and Alborz ridges in the parts overlooking the Caspian Sea and differ in terms of altitude. Up to a height of 100 meters, there are swamps and coastal swamps, where a variety of reeds and sedges, as well as flowers such as blue brides, lilies and lotuses can be seen in abundance. Then there are oak, eucalyptus, elm, beech, hornbeam and alder that up to 800 and 1,000 meters in height with smaller trees and ivy and boxwood, pomegranate, raspberry, hawthorn and the like form the main vegetation. From an altitude of 1,000 to 2,500 meters, white beech, oak and birch can be considered as the main types of vegetation. Overall, of the country’s 12.4 million hectares of forest, 1.8 million hectares are forests that cover the southern tip of the Caspian Sea up to an altitude of 2,700 meters.
  2. The area of ​​broad-leaved western forests, which includes all the forests of the Zagros region, and compared to the dense northern dense forests, are relatively sparse, sparse and more like a park. In this vast region, which includes Kurdistan, Kermanshah, Lorestan and Bakhtiari, broad-leaved trees with short shrubs and steppe plants can be seen. The trees of these forests are dense in the valleys and very scattered in other places, but they exist up to an altitude of two thousand meters above sea level. The main types of trees in these forests include oak, walnut, fig, pear, apple, almond and raspberry, the type of which varies according to altitude and latitude.
  3. Mountain steppe region, which includes the mountains of northern Khorasan and Azerbaijan, and the density of its plants varies according to soil type and annual rainfall. In this vast area, grasses or steppes can be seen in the high altitudes, and in the middle crowns of semi-steppe (wheat) species, and in low-water valleys, a variety of fruit trees can be seen.
  4. The arid region of the plateaus (foothills), which covers a large part of the country. In the northern half of this region, the plants are similar to the plants of Central Asia and the East Caucasus. In the northern highlands of central Iran, some plants are pillows that grow on the ground instead of growing in the air to escape excessive evaporation. Among the valid species of this region are cypress or juniper, cherries, plums and in the lower crowns Chubak, sainfoin and gummy plants and different species of thorns, wheat flowers and the like.
  5. The arid region of desert rivers, which includes all deserts and sand dunes, ‌ sand fields and inland sands with a large area and in all of them salt-loving plants such as rattle, thorns, March, caravanserai, and in the bed of wetter rivers. And the eastern and southern desert areas, all kinds of acorns, acacias, shrubs and melons can be seen.
  6. The area of ​​southern coastal forests, which is located on the edge of the Iranian plateau and have many similarities with island and peninsula plants in the south. In the sands, salt marshes and swamps of the south, numerous plants of mango, tri-breast, oyster, and laurel can be seen from the port of Lengeh to Pakistan, along with Indian and African plants such as coconut, banana, oleander, melon, sugarcane. And most importantly, you grow dates that are of great economic importance. In the swamps of Bandar Khamir, Jask and Chah Bahar, the hara tree or tamarind, which is the most important type of mangrove plant community, can be seen.

Native plants of Iran

Iran is a country of four seasons. Due to the special geographical location of Iran, its location between two seas, its special topography and many other factors, special and unique animal and plant species can be found everywhere in our country, Iran. Iran’s plant diversity is so vast that it makes it unique among other countries in the Middle East. In this article, we try to acquaint you with some rare species of native plants of Iran

Iran is very rich in vegetation due to its great climatic diversity and unique topography. In fact, every part of the country has its own plant. Desert areas have saline plants and foothills have foothills. In fact, currently about 2500 native plant species have been identified in Iran, only a few of which have been studied. In the following, we will introduce some of the most famous native plants of the country to you.

Persian Parrotia

Surely, you have passed by this tree many times, regardless of its name and symbol, and you have enjoyed its beauty. Because this plant is specific to the foothills of Alborz. If you have traveled to the north of the country during the autumn deciduous season, you must have seen extremely beautiful trees whose leaves have several colors at the same time. Green, pink, purple, yellow, orange and red are the colors that the leaves of this beautiful tree take on in autumn.

The name of this tree in English is “Parrotia Persica” or “Persian iron wood”. The plant was named after a German botanist and tourist who had traveled to the region to study the difference in altitude between the Caspian Sea and the Black Sea. As the English name of this tree suggests, this unique species is one of the endemic plants of Iran.

In addition to its beautiful leaves, the evangelical tree has other interesting features. The trunk of this tree, in addition to being very beautiful and winding, has a very hard and strong wood.

 

Due to the excessive hardness of this wood, it can not be used in industry. The red flowers of this tree, which grow every year in March, are another attraction of this tree. These flowers do not have petals and grow like rubies on the branches of a plant.

The evangelical tree has become very popular in the world. In Europe, for example, they use it to decorate their gardens. This tree is one of the most important plant species in the country that undoubtedly needs more care.

Persian Parrotia

Fritillaria persica

One of the plants that has been mentioned even in the mythological legends of the country, is the inverted tulip. As the name implies, the flowers of this amazing plant grow downwards. This flower is also called Maryam tears and the reason is that the tears and nectar of the plant overflow from inside. According to Iranian legends, when Siavash was beheaded by Gracevus, Laleh Vazhgon was present and witnessed this sad incident, and since then he has lowered his head to mourn Siavash.

The inverted Iranian tulip is another example of a native plant of Iran that usually begins to grow in spring and May. The slopes of the Zagros Mountains are the best place for these plants to grow and can be seen in different areas of Isfahan, Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari, Lorestan, Ilam and Kermanshah.

The height of this flower from the ground sometimes reaches more than 120 cm. Due to the fact that this plant is one of the endangered species, today the Environmental Protection Organization has good programs in place to preserve it.

Iranian saffron | Crocus gilanicus

Iranian saffron is also called Iranian red gold. This plant is one of the native plants of Iran and one of the most valuable species in the country, which also has a high export value. Saffron is normally grown in tropical regions, but saffron has also been seen in cities such as Hamedan and Gilan. Flowering of saffron and its harvest season is autumn. This plant has many medicinal properties and is used in various industries.

Susan Chelcheragh | Lilium ledebourii

One of the most famous native plants of Iran is Susan Chelcheragh. This flower is one of the most valuable species of lily in the world and is known in the world as “Lilium ledebourii”. Susan Chelcheragh is very important for the country. This endemic plant of the country was registered in 1976 as the first national flower of Iran in the list of national monuments.

It is a matter of pride that this flower grows naturally only in two parts of the world, both of which are part of the Iranian plateau. Talesh region of Iran and Azerbaijan and Damash of Gilan province. The only protected habitat of this plant in Iran is a 4-hectare area near Damash village in Gilan. This area has an altitude ranging from 1750 to 2000 meters above sea level.

Fortunately, the country’s environmental protection organization protects this rare and wonderful species well, so that their growing area is separated by fences from other places, and their permission is required to exploit them.

This flower, like the inverted tulip, is an inverted flower and its petals grow outwards and downwards. The height of this flower varies from 50 to 150 cm above the ground. The lily of the valley was discovered by the German scientist and botanist Friedrich von Ledbour in the village of Damash, Gilan. The reason for the English name of this flower is the same German scientist. The lifespan of lily of the valley is very short and they can be seen for a month from mid-June.

Iranian lily | Iris meda

Among the lily flowers, a species of Persian lily is found, which belongs to the category of rhizome bearded lilies. This type of iris has smooth, linear leaves and cream-yellow flowers with different tonalities and combined with white. The petals are wavy and have black hairs and a brown and golden halo in the middle, with a cylindrical ovary in the middle. Its final inflorescence is another characteristic of this beautiful flower. The areas where this flower can be seen are between Sari and Azerbaijan. The most interesting thing about the Iranian lily is that it was discovered by an Australian tourist named Pollack, who noticed the differences and similarities between these native Iranian plants and the iris Iris Chamaeiris. In June, you can see the flowering of this plant and its main production is in the north of the country from East to Central Azerbaijan. This flower grows on mountains and among rocks and soils without grass cover and has been a great inspiration for Iranian poets.

 

Cyclamen persicum

Again, we will introduce one of the flowers of northern Iran. Nagonsar flower is one of the native plants of Iran which is famous for C. persicum. If you are looking for Iranian primrose in winter, you can find this plant in the northern regions of our country. Although it is mostly found in the western parts of the Mediterranean Sea, but in Iran, its native type is also spectacular. Unripe flowers are seen in different colors such as red, white and pink, brown and purple. This flower is found at the foot of trees with broad leaves and is a perennial herbaceous plant of the genus Primrose. The lower part of the stem (hypocotyl) thickens and clumps near the soil surface

Taxus

This plant is one of the evergreen plants that does not change color in all seasons and does not have autumn. In summer, it must be placed in the shade and away from the sun. Its needle-shaped leaves and strange fruit give this plant a funny and fancy look. Its red fruits, although poisonous, are part of bird food, but be aware that eating the fruit is dangerous to humans. Today, this plant is one of the houseplants and is expanding commercially, which prevents its extinction. The yew plant is in the order of pines and is one of the native plants of Iran.

Viola odorata

We have all seen the violet flower in the parks and we are familiar with it. Iranian violet flower is actually a native flower of northern Iran and grows by car in the humid area of ​​our country, but due to its commercial production, today we can see this beautiful flower in all parks of our country. Violet is a perennial and generally biennial plant that is planted both by seed and by division of the plant in late summer. This flower has 5 petals and can be seen from late winter to late spring. This flower is seen in dark purple, white and other colors and has a very fragrant scent. Scented violets are usually planted with tricolor violets to both create a good aroma in the space and create a more beautiful view.

Golden Cup

Sternbergia or Golden Cup is one of the plants that have onions and flowers in autumn and has eight known species. Other names are Narges Payizeh, Susan Dasht, Sardeh, Narges Zemstaneh and Gol Hasrat Zard Payez. Although the number of species is small, but this small number is very widespread and extends from southwestern Europe to southwestern Asia. It usually grows in sandy soils and good planting bed drainage, dry summer periods and calcareous soils are recommended for flowering. It is propagated by planting onions during their dormancy period in late summer or early autumn. Of course, it can be propagated using its onions when the leaves are gone, ie in late spring. There are only three species of it in Iran, but unfortunately all of these species are endangered.

* Autumn Golden Cup

* Golden Cup of Cyrus

* Golestan Golden Cup

Blue star

Blue star or silage is an onion plant. Blue star can be found in the highlands of beech forests between 800 and 2000 meters or higher in Gilan province and adjacent areas in Azerbaijan province. Usually these flowers have a glass-like shape, but if they do not get enough light, the shape of the petals becomes horizontal. Blue star is resistant to cold. It is possible to propagate the sila plant by its seeds, and it is also possible to plant its bulbs at a depth of 8-10 cm in late summer or early autumn when the plant is dormant.

* Iranian blue star

Numerous relatively small flowers of this species are located in a long cluster. It is found in the wet grasslands of Kurdistan and the flowering season is May.

* Najm Abi-e Gilani

Gilani blue star or Caucasian blue star is another type of blue star of this rare plant in Iran.

* Starlings  Blue star

Blue-bellied starlings are found in the Caspian forests and often in crevices in rock walls. Its flowering season is April

Sanblak Chalous

This rare species of rare plant in Iran is in the genus of crow and has been seen only in Chalous valley. It grows at an altitude of 300 to 1100 meters at the edge of the cliffs and in March and April. The beautiful blue color of this small flower attracts attention. The onion of this rare plant in Iran gives only one flower, which rarely reaches a height of 30 cm.