A new book of Karel Prach and Lawrence Walker

Karel Prach and his colleague Lawrence R Walker published the book entitled Comparative Plant Succession among Terrestrial Biomes of the World. It is a comprehensive summary of his lifelong research on plant succession.

Flowering strips for the second time

Althoug the weather was not too good, we enjoyed a lot of fun anyway. This time we met during the sampling of flowering strips in the campus of the Faculty of Science USB and the Biology Centre CAS. Some parts of the strips are overgrown with grasses, we however believe that everything will turn out well, and that with extensive management we can suppress the grasses and let the sown herbs stand out in full beauty.

Thanks Petra J. for the photos.


Geocaching serves the nature conservation already for 5 years!

Cache "hunters" have been contributing to the nature conservation in South Bohemian sand pits already for five years. How? By catching their cache, they disturb the turfs of grasses and the layer of litter, thus maintaining plots of bare sand which can then be colonized by psammophilous species of plants and insects. And it really works!

Photo: Petra Janečková

The adventure on pasture plots continues

... this time in Milovice where we also monitor plots grazed by large herbivores or left without any treatment. During the adventurous crossing of the pasture Traviny, a horse ran in front of our car.

In 2018, we transferred biomass from a nearby dry grassland to the former field, which is already also part of the pasture. Anička describes how the vegetation develops: "It looks more optimistic this year, the next year will be decisive, though. But a number of new nice species have already appeared there."

Thanks to Anička K. and Luboš Tichý for the photos.


Already the eighth season at Váté písky

We traditionally spent the beginning of June by sampling of the permanent plots at Váté písky near Bzenec. This year, it was already the eighth season of monitoring of restoration of the psammophytic vegetation on plots where the upper layers of soil were removed together with the expansive bushgrass (Calamagrostis epigejos). Thanks to this intervention, rare psammophytic plant species returned to the plots.

However, the ambitions of our group have way exceeded the boundaries of science - in the Vojšické louky which were restored by Ivana Jongepierová using regional seed mixtures, we tried to enter the Guinness Book of Records for the greatest participation of botanists sampling one plot. We are still waiting for the decision of the committee whether we succeeded with this attempt :-).

We greatly thank Ivana and Karel for the help in the field and hospitality.

Mosaic cutting of flowering strips

The flowering strips in the Stromovka city park are cut. Only partially, in fact. This time we chosde mosaic cutting for their maintenance. The reason is that they can flower again in a few weeks, and they cannot be overgrown with competitive grasses which would displace the sown species of herbs. Therefore, after the currently flowering parts of the strips stop flowering, the cut parts begin to flower and consequently the strip will make insects and people happy continuously.

We thank Vojta Študent for the photos and cutting.

Adventure on pasture plots

Monitoring of the effect of grazing of large herbivores on the development of vegetation continues also this year. We have established new experimental plots in Josefovské louky near Jaroměř. Klára describes what an amazing adventure it was: "We didn't get wet at all and experienced a beautiful sunny day, walking through flooded sedgesand sinking into the mud in the reeds, wading through a forest and even a beautiful wet meadow. And, of course, we saw horses!"

The work continued also in Podyjí on plots established in 2018. This "expedition" was also successful and our student "Little" Anička saved us from the alpha male of Exmoor pony. As Klára concluded: "Nothing is better than having an experienced horse caretakers in the group."

We thank all the helpers and collaborators as well as the administrator of the Josefovské louky Bird Park for the perfectly prepared fences.


Another season with flowering strips has just started

We traditionally start the vegetation season by sampling of our flowering strips. This time, almost the whole group took part in the samling in the Stromovka city park. The flowering strips have not been in the peek of flowering yet, however they still looked nice. We believe that they make happy not only us but also the visitors of Stromovka.

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