Gleanings from iron ore heaps in northern Moravia and Silesia (north-eastern Czech Republic) I.: Linaria odora and Silene csereii

Jiří Danihelka, David Hlisnikovský

In the late 1950s and the 1960s, numerous alien species were introduced with iron ore to the industrial region in the north-east of the Czech Republic, mainly from southern Ukraine. Their occurrences were carefully documented by local botanists, Zdeněk Kilián and František Krkavec, and numerous specimens collected by the former are stored in several Czech herbaria. though both botanists put a lot of effort into identification of plants collected on on iron ore heaps, some of the specimens were misidentified or remained unidentified.

Here we report on the records of two species native to eastern Europe that were collected in the early 1960s from iron ore heaps in the town of Třinec, in Vítkovice, a part of the city of Ostrava, and next to the town of Polanka nad Odrou south of Ostrava, but remained unidentified until recently.

Linaria odora, a species of the L. vulgaris group, was repeatedly collecteed in 1963-1965 by Z. Kilián in Polanka nad Odrou, and the specimens have been preserved in four different public herbaria. The plants were erroneously identified as L. angustissima, but these records were not published. Based on the assumed origin in Ukraine (iron ore is reported to be introduced from the Kerč Peninsula in Crimea), the plants should be correspond to the very similar L. dulcis, even though their morphological characters correspond rather to L. odora as described in literature. However, we follow the taxonomy of Flora Europae, which includes L. dulcis and other morphological variants into L odora.

Silene csereii was collected from the iron ore heaps in Třinec and probably also in Vítkovice in 1961, and in Polanka nad Odrou in 1964 by Z. Kilián, and independently in Polanka nad Odrou by J. Šmarda and L. Vaněčková also in 1964. The plants collected by Z. Kilián were identified as S. inflata var. leptophylla (i. e. S. vulgaris), and the records were published under this obscure name.

To our knowledge, these are the first and only records of Linaria odora and Silene csereii for the flora of the Czech Republic. However, the occurrences of both species turned out to be temporary, and they have not been recorded in the Czech Republic since then. Therefore, both have to be considered as casual neophytes in this contry’s flora.