Living Collection of Flora Graeca Sibthorpiana

From the Folios of the Monumental Edition to the Beds of a Botanic Garden in Greece

  • Sophia Rhizopoulou National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
  • Alexander Lykos National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
  • Pinelopi Delipetrou National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
  • Irene Vallianatou Julia and Alexander N. Diomedes Botanic Garden


The results of a survey of vascular plants illustrated in the 19th-century publication Flora Graeca Sibthorpiana (FGS) and grown in Diomedes Botanic Garden (DBG) in Athens metropolitan area in Greece reveal a total number of 274 taxa belonging to 67 families, using the Raunkiaer system of categorising plants by life form (Raunkiaer, 1934). Therophytes dominate with 36 per cent, while hemicryptophytes, chamephytes and geophytes follow with 16 per cent, 14 per cent and 14 per cent respectively. In terms of life cycle, 60 per cent are perennials, 36 per cent annuals and 4 per cent other growth forms adapted to environmental disturbance. Although anthropogenic pressures and environmental stresses have caused loss of habitat and resulted in profound landscape transformation in the eastern Mediterranean, DBG contributes to the maintenance of approximately one-third of the plants collected in territories of the Levant in 1787. This living collection constitutes an important testimony to the scientific value, heritage and plant diversity described in FGS. Statistics are provided comparing the plants collected and illustrated for FGS and those now growing in DBG.

Author Biographies

Sophia Rhizopoulou, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
Associate Professor
Irene Vallianatou, Julia and Alexander N. Diomedes Botanic Garden


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How to Cite
Rhizopoulou, S., Lykos, A., Delipetrou, P., & Vallianatou, I. (2012). Living Collection of Flora Graeca Sibthorpiana. Sibbaldia: The International Journal of Botanic Garden Horticulture, (10), 171-196.