Mt Chelmos (2355m), also called Mt Aroania, is located in the northern Peloponnese and is characterized by a variety of geological substrata and soil types. The main elements of its landscape include well forested slopes with Abies cephalonica and Pinus nigra ssp pallasiana forests, steep calcareous cliffs, the Mavrolimni lake(2050m) of glacial origin and the impressive Styx valley associated with a small wet cave, and the Mavroneri waterfall at its base. Erosion of limestone has mainly contributed to the formation of a stng relief with steep calcarous cliffs and screes.
The mountain range of Erymanthos is the highest one of an extended mountainous area in north-west Peloponnese, consisting of several peaks and characterized by a multivarious relief with many springs, valleys, plateaus and gorges. From the springs of Olenos summit(2221m) two small rivers are formed, crossing the two biggest gorges of Erymanthos. These gorges are very impressive with several spectacular waterfalls. The geological substrate is composed of plate limestone with layers of ceratolith and flysch. The northern slopes have Abies cephalonica forests, the south slopes are covered with Abies cephalonica and Juniperus foetidissima. The western slopes have extended calcareous cliffs.
The mountain range of Mt Parnon(1935m), or Mt Parnonas, is composed mainly of calcareous substrate and is one of the oldest areas of the Peloponnese and was isolated for a long perod, like Mt Taygetos. On its slopes conifer forests of Abies cephalonica and Pinus nigra ssp pallasiana thrive, together with Taygetos its the only European site for Juniperus drupacea. Castanea forests are also present here in good condition and extensive areas. We also included pictures of plants from the mountains south of the actual Parnon range, as far south as Mt Koulouchera.
Mt Saitas(1812m) is situated south of the Feneos basin and is adjacent to the mountains Chelmos, Kyllini and Oligirtos. Mt Saitas is well known as the site where Biebersteinia orphanidis was rediscovered in 1994 after being considered extinct since its first discovery in 1851. The northern slopes of the mountain also host the largest populations of another rare and interesting plant, Adonis cyllenea. Also an Iris species which first was described as Iris germanica, is now considered as being a new species named Iris hellenica.
Mt Taygetos is situated in the central peninsula of the 3 southern peninsulas of the Peloponnese. Seen from the plain of Sparta, the Taygetos are a magnificent range of steep jagged limestone and dolomite peaks covered in snow until late spring rising in the south to the conical summit of Profitis Ilias at 2407m. Lower forested foothills of semi-metamorphic rock surround the main massif and rise steeply out of the plain. These are pierced on their eastern flanks by deep gorges through which the snow melt water floods down into the Evrotas river in the plain of Sparta. There are at least 6 gorges which are of botanical interest.