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The Gen. Dezydery Chłapowski Landscape Park

section: Nature
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The Chłapowski Landscape Park, created in 1992, sprawls over 172 sq. km between Kościan and Śrem.

The park is mostly renowned for its unique rustic landscape and its scheme of maintaining the clumps of forest between the fields. Most of the park, whose rate of afforestation does not exceed 15%, comprises arable soil. It was here that Dezydery Chłapowski pioneered a new agricultural economy on his family property (the estate was in Turew) in the 1820s. Chłapowski’s method relies on implementing a network of forest stands and windbreaks between fields to fortify the landscape and increase crop yields. Robinias, limes and poplars are the most common species in the forested areas planted along the roadsides. Commonly known as acacias, robinias come from North America and were planted to keep bees supplied with fragrant flowers. Alders are the most frequently encountered trees along the water courses, while the roads have been planted with cherry trees, apple trees and, more rarely, oaks. The area that makes up the park has long been subjected to farming pressure. This explains the anthropogenic nature of the plant communities and the disappearance of the weed communities from the fields. Protected, rare and threatened species are sheltered by the stands of trees maintained between the fields, ridges, watercourses and meadows, and by the few remaining forests.

Chłapowski Palace in Turew currently houses the Agricultural and Forestry Research Institution of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Research is conducted into agricultural landscape issues with a view to increasing its resilience to the various threats posed by modern civilisation. This work remains true to the tradition of arranging rural areas initiated by Gen. Dezyder Chłapowski and is widely recognised and of international repute.

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