The palm forest of Preveli

 

The palm forest of Preveli

 

The palm forest of Preveli is located below the monastery of Preveli, at the mouth of the Kourtaliótiko gorge. Behind the beach is an extensive forest of the endemic Cretan date palm Phoenix theophrastii. This is the second largest palm forest in Crete after Vai in the Far East of the island.

Photos of the palm forest of Preveli

  • View of the palm forest from above
  • View of the palm forest from above
  • Palm forest
  • Palm forest
  • Palm forest
  • Palm forest
  • Palm forest
  • Palm forest
  • Palm forest

The fire of the palm forest

On the 22nd of August 2010 a fire swept through the palm forest of Preveli.

According to the first news reports most of the palm forest - one of the only three forest of the endemic Cretan date palm Phoenix theophrastii - appeared to have been destroyed.

Later reports indicated that the crowns had not been burnt and that the forest could regenerate but that it might take 30 years.

Fortunately, in the way most news reporting happens,the damage was quite exaggerated and iwithin a few months palms were seen with new shoots of fresh green leaves coming out

In early January 2011  I went to take a look. The speed at which the forest is regenerating was nothing short of amazing: fresh palm leaves were everywhere, even sprouting from charred trunks.  Almost all the trees had survived.
The fire also entirely cleared the dense ground vegetation so that the palms were left with plenty of light around them which helped them regenerate faster.

Take a look at the photos below. The first two show the forest as it was before it burnt down. The rest of the images were taken just over 4 months after the fire with the forest resurrecting. Nature's miracle.

A few years later the forest was almost entirely regenerated.

  • The palm forest of Preveli before the fire of 2010
  • The palm forest of Preveli before the fire of 2010
  • The palm forest of Preveli seen from above - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli seen from above - January 2011
  • Entrance of the forest by the beach
  • Entering the forest - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • Fresh shoots in the  palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • Fresh shoots in the  palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • Fresh shoots in the  palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli seen from above - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • The palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • Fresh shoots in the  palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • Fresh shoots in the  palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • Fresh shoots in the  palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • Fresh shoots in the  palm forest of Preveli - January 2011
  • Fresh shoots in the  palm forest of Preveli - January 2011

 

 

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