The Flora of Iraklia

The Flora of Iraklia

Despite its small size, Iraklia has a broadly varied and interesting flora. 

The dominant trees are Phoenicean juniper, wild olive, fig and carob. There are also a few Aleppo pines (pinus halepensis), Italian cypresses, oleanders, tamarix trees by the seaside and date palms –planted by the locals. One will also encounter small olive and almond groves and a few fruit orchards.

The range of shrubs mainly includes lentisc (Pistacia terebinthus), thyme, heath, Jerusalem sage, hairy thorny broom, thorny burnet, asphodel, giant fennel, summer savory (satureja thymbra), pot marjoram (origanum onites), the everlasting curry plant (helichrysum italicum), barbary fig and three-leaved sage.

In the coastal zone one encounters spiny chicory and sea daffodils. The cliffs are adorned with caper plants, while in a small part of the island one finds a form of wild cabbage (brassica nigra).

The islets and seaside cliffs host sea stocks, or gillyflowers (Matthiola incana).

In farm- and shrub-land vegetation follows rainfall and so wildflowers abound in the autumn and spring. 

The most common are one crocus species (crocus tournefortii), the crown anemone, the common poppy and the crown daisy.

There is also an abundance of wild greens that come under local names.

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