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The Biological Section




Emplacement and area

The Biological Section is situated in the central part of "A. Fatu" Botanic Garden and presents approximately 5,27 ha area.

Description

At the section's entrance, guarded on the lateral sides by the tree's of life columns (Thuja occidentalis 'Fastigiata'), there are constructed two rockeries presenting some aspects regarding the evolution of living beings. The rockery situated in the northern side, realized of limestone from Repedea – Iasi, presents to our visitors a series of palaeontological arguments of the evolution process represented by a rich fossil fauna, especially molluscs deposited in calcareous grit stones dating from the middle of the Sarmatian stage. On this rockery are cultivated species presenting some aspects related to the evolution of the flower:
  • from the flowers presenting radial symmetry (actinomorphic) to flowers presenting a single symmetry plan (zygomorphic);
  • from the species presenting dialipetalous flowers to the species presenting gamopetalous flowers.

On the left side of the rockery are cultivated species presenting dialipetalous actinomorphic flowers: Anemone nemorosa (European thimbleweed), Paeonia officinalis (European peony), species from Rosaceae, Crassulaceae, Linaceae etc.

On the superior part of the rockery are exposed species presenting dialipetalous zygomorphic flowers: Delphinium elatum (candle larkspur), Consolida regalis (royal knight’s spur), species from Balsaminaceae, Leguminosae, Violaceae etc.

On the right side of the rockery are cultivated species presenting gamopetalous flowers: characterized by radial symmetry (actinomorfic) cultivated at its basis: Chrysanthemum leucanthemum (ox-eye daisy), Inula helenium (elecampane), Narcissus poeticus (poet's narcissus) and, at the top of the rockery, species presenting a single symmetry plan (zygomorphic): Hosta plantaginea (fragrant plantain lily), Hemerocallis fulva (orange daylily), Crocosmia crocosmiflora etc.

On the second rockery, situated in the vicinity of the central axle of the Botanic Garden and realized of sedimentary rocks brought from Pojorata – Suceava county, are exemplified some morphological arguments of the evolution of vegetal species: metamorphosed stems and leafs and progressive or regressive metamorphosis of flowers.

Another subsection is that called Plants adaptations to:

  • pollination realized by wind action: Corylus avellana (common hazel), Alnus incana (grey alder), Juglans regia (common walnut);
  • pollination realized by diverse animals (bees, bumble bees, wasps, day or night butterflies, flies, birds, bats, snails): Malus sp. (apple), Antirrhinum majus (garden snapdragon), Digitalis purpurea (purple foxglove), Lychnis chalcedonica (maltese cross), Saponaria officinalis (soapwort), Primula veris (cowslip primrose), Mirabilis jalapa (marvel of Peru), Nicotiana alata (jasmine tobacco), Narcissus poeticus (poet’s narcissus), Ruta graveolens (common rue), Asarum europaeum (European wild ginger), Magnolia kobus (Kobus magnolia), Cornus mas (European cornel), Viburnum opulus (European cranberrybush) etc.
In the centre of this section are groped together species presenting various ways of insects attraction:
  • flowers grouped in inflorescences (Apiaceae, Asteraceae);
  • the bright colouring of:
    • plants (Chaenomeles japonica – maule’s quince);
    • stamens (Myrtaceae family);
    • stigma: (Ricinus communis – castor bean);
    • bracts (Amaranthaceae, Euphorbia marginata – snow on the mountain).
  • nectar-glands (Helleborus niger – black hellebore, Viola odorata – sweet violet);
  • extrafloral nectar-glads (Ricinus communis – castor bean, Impatiens roylei);
  • citralic oils (Melissa officinalis – common balm);
  • chemical compounds containing paraffin (Robinia pseudacacia – black locust, Convalaria majalis – lily of the valley, Reseda lutea – wild mignonette);
  • unpleasant smells attracting certain insects species (Spiraea media - spirea, Sambucus nigra – black elderberry);
  • bright coloured pollen (Papaver rhoeas – common poppy, Helianthemum nummularium – common rockrose);
  • hairs from the stamens (Verbascum phlomoides – orange mullein).
In the left side of the sector’s axis there is another sub-section presenting Adaptations for plants fruits and seeds dissemination.
Here are cultivated species that are disseminating their seeds by:
  • their own ways (autochoric): Impatiens nolitangere;
  • other agents (allochoric):
    • by wind (anemochorous): presenting very small seeds (Ericaceae family) or annexes adapted to flight (maple, birch, hornbeam, willow);
    • by animals (zoochore): Gallium verum, Xanthium spinosum;
    • ants (myrmecochorous): Asarum europaeum (European wild ginger), Euphorbia lathyris (mole plant), Chelidonium majus (celandine);
    • birds: Viscum album (European mistletoe), Viburnum opulus (European cranberrybush);
A special group of rare, threatened and endangered species, protected by law in Romania is represented by: Taxus baccata (yew); Hepatica transsilvanica; Hieracium pojoritense; Asphodeline lutea (king’s spear); Ephedra distachya (sea grape).
The section also includes another plants collections. Among that, the Iris germanica varieties collection presents a particularly attraction to the visitors by their various coloured and agreeable smelling corollas.

By the approached theme, this section presents some aspects of the vegetal world organisation (structure and functions), aspects of plants evolution (arguments and mechanisms), of plants adaptation to the environmental conditions, the role of humans in the directing of the evolutive process.
The main role of this section is to contribute to man education in the spirit of the scientific conception about world and life and to mobilize them to nature conservation and environment preservation.



University "Alexandru Ioan Cuza" of Iasi

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