Gladiolus palustris Gaudin - Marsh gladiolus
This species is characterized by a showy unilateral spike inflorescence, slightly zig-zag shaped, with purple flowers, 3-4 cm long, which can be 50-60 cm high in the older specimens. It can be found in central Europe in grasslands and pasture lands at an altitude of 1,500 metres. It is not, in spite of its name, a marsh plant but it is mainly related to calcareous soils, rich in humus, wet in spring and dry in summer. On the plain it blooms from the end of May to June.
It is particularly present in the Molinia wet meadows of the lowland and hilly area of Friuli and in various plant associations related to the dry meadows of the Illyrian type (Scorzoneretalia), from lowland to tableland, where there is hydric availability especially in the blooming period, and in particular in the association Gladiolo-Molinietum arundinaceae.
In the resurgence area the species is represented in the wet meadow if it is not flooded, which destroys the species, and in dry meadow untouched by plough up. In these areas the species has not suffered any decrease in number.
The species is included in the Annex II of the Council Directive 92/43/EEC.
G. Bolognini ©