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Lesvos’s flora

Blessed with an optimal soil composition and favourable climate conditions, Lesvos is a wonderful image of nature, captured by the poetry of Sappho (6th century BC) and systematically recorded by the philosopher Theofrastos (3rd century BC).

Over 1.400 species and subspecies make up the flora of this botanical heaven: aromatic flowers, healing species, rare ones, trees, bushes. With the exception of the rather barren western Lesvos, the rest of the island is a feast of olive groves (more than 11.000.000 olive trees) and pine forests, beeches, fir, plane, chestnut and oak trees.

One of the species that are peculiar to Lesvos and unique throughout the country is the yellow azalea (Rhododendron Luteum Sweet). It is a deciduous plant with ovate-lanceolate leaves and beautiful yellow flowers, which goes as high as 4,5m. The sandy and full of argil soil of the island is the perfect house to the plant that loves heights: you will come across it on mount Profitis Ilias, at a height not inferior to 60m, and all the way to its peak (799m). 

Like the soul of the party, the yellow azalea is always surrounded by its fellow-plants, such as oleander (Nerium oleander), Cretan fern (Pteris aquillina), willow (Salix fragillis), cane apple (Arbutus unedo), ivy (Hedera helix), and chestnut tree (Castanea satina).

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