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Plant Focus

A guest post by Matt Candeias, host of the In Defense of Plants podcast and blog

Oaks in Iran: September 28-October 16, 2016

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Josef Souček

Published May 2018 in International Oaks No. 29: 151–161


A trip to Iran had been on the Plaček Quercetum agenda since autumn 2015. Of the dozen or so taxa found in Iran, our main interest was to find populations of those species found only in Iran and in the neighboring Caucasus and Turkey. Our primary objective was Quercus castaneifolia and Q. macranthera, both of which grow in the Hyrcan Forest in the Alborz Mountains, near the Caspian Sea, where the climate is humid, unlike in other parts of Iran. The Alborz Mountains extend roughly between the provinces of Ardabil and Golestan. These Mountains boast a rich and diversified flora, due in part to the varied climate: from the shores of the Caspian, where temperatures rarely fall below freezing, to the alpine-type vegetation in the mountains that soar to more than 4,000 m above sea level, remaining in parts snow-capped for most of the year. The presence of these mountains creates the desert conditions found throughout most of the interior of Iran




Djavanchir Khoie, K. 1967. Les chênes de l’Iran. PhD Thesis. Université de Montpellier, Faculté des Sciences.

Menitsky, Yu. L. Oaks of Asia. Enfield, NH, USA: Science Publishers, 2005.

Panahi, P., Z. Jamzad, M.R. Pourmajidian, A. Fallah, M. Pourhashemi, and H. Sorhrabi. 2012. Taxonomic Revision of the Quercus brantii complex (Fagaceae) in Iran with emphasis on leaf and pollen micromorphology. Acta Botanica Hungarica 54(3-4) : 355-375.

Rechinger, K.H. Flora Iranica Vol. 77: Fagaceae. Graz, 197.