New year's anomaly of the week: winter flowering of plants in Central Russia

Members of the MSU project “flora of Russia” recorded winter flowering of plants in Central Russia.

According to scientists, the unusually warm December in the middle zone of our country (temperate continental climate) has led to rare seasonal phenomena in nature. So, in late December, scientists still recorded autumn activity of some insects, and in the woods appeared late mushrooms.

But I was especially struck by the ongoing vegetation many plants are green remained urban lawns and rural pastures, forests and country houses.

“in the Fall of 2019 in Nechernozemie’t had no frost, snow cover was absent, and fallen in some places the snow was gone within a couple days. All this has created unexpected conditions for the Central Russian plants. Members of the MSU project “flora of Russia” in December 2019 watched closely for unusual changes in nature and identified dozens of cases of the winter flowering wild plants. In scientific literature there are no data on the flowering plants, for example, in Moscow in December, although some species bloom for only a week before the New year,” – said leading researcher of the biological faculty of Moscow state University Alexey Seregin.

So, in Moscow on December 26, a marine biologist Georgy Vinogradov discovered the flowers on the shepherd’s bag – small urban weed. Flowers was located on the side escape, and formed for a couple of days before. However, the microclimate is noticeably warmer than surrounding areas, where there were other surprising observation.

for Example, on December 27 in the Mikhailovsky district of the Ryazan region were seen the familiar yellow flowers mother and stepmother. As the author notes findings naturalist Paulina Likhachev, in the last week of December, she watched all the new flowering plants. In fact, a rare autumn flowering species gradually turned into almost more active winter.

the Mother and stepmother bothnovena (Tussilago farfara) bloom 27 December 2019 in the Mikhailovsky district of Ryazan region.Photo Polina Likhacheva.

But the most interesting find was made to the North of the capital. 26 Dec in Konakovo district of Tver region mycologist Ivan Matershev photographed several species of fungi and the active insects, and the blossoming pechenocnuu noble. Typically, this plant blooms in late April – early may, capping a solid spruce blue rug.

However, as the author of the shots, the blooming of the anemones in the years when the Dec issued warm enough, happens regularly. For example, it was in 2006 and 2015, while four years ago bloom on December 25 was even more mass.

“the Habitats of most wild plants of the middle band stretches for thousands of kilometers, going, including to Western Europe, where mild winter climatic norm. Some species are able to bloom not only in spring and early summer but again in fall, which is why they unanimously said a winter bloom on a warm December”, – said Alexey Seregin.

we Add that the project “flora of Russia” on the iNaturalist platform was organized at the Moscow state University in January 2019 on the grant of the Russian Foundation for basic research (RFBR). During the year, the project has collected more than 220 thousand fotooblucheniya plants from all over the country from three thousand participants – both Amateurs and professional biologists.

Initially, the task of collecting these data was to identify the habitat of individual species and studying changes in their habitats. However, weather anomalies helped to reveal another application field data capture is a documentation of anomalies of seasonal development in the context of global climate change.

Note that the MSU project “flora of Russia” that anyone can join. Similar projects exist for those who are more interested in birds and mushrooms (and not only in Russia).

By the way, earlier experts estimatedNeely contribution of Russia to global warming.

Also “Conduct.Science” ( talked about how plants capture a warmer Arctic. Meanwhile in the US because of climate change began to move the forest.

Text: To.Science