Alpine Garden Society



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CROCUSES OF THE TAURUS MOUNTAINS - a GREENTOURS tour for the Alpine Garden Society

Introduction
Crocus calanthus A staggering twenty-eight species of Crocus are on the agenda for this tour alongside many other early flowering bulbs. Recent discoveries form a major component of this Crocus extravaganza, in no small part due to the explorations of your two Turkish leaders who have explored this rich region for several years bringing a number of new and often distinctive and beautiful species to light. Yasemin has one named after her - newly described Crocus yaseminiae. We’ll also encounter Crocus bowlesianus whose white to soft lilac tepals are intensively veined or feathered outside, Crocus brickelii, named after Christopher Brickell, and the stunning pure ice-blue Crocus baytopiorum named after the Turkish Botanical Professor Turhan Baytop. 

Crocus chrysanthus Close to Akseki we’ll seek Crocus roseoviolaceus, one of the most strikingly coloured species in the region as well as Crocus chrysanthus and Crocus isauricus. The high pastures of Gembos Yayla have an extra special show of eggyolk yellow Crocus gembosii and purple-striped blue Crocus mavii. They've hybridised extensively resulting in a kaleidoscopic array of colours with all intermediate forms on show. Close to Antalya we’ll find Crocus aff. tauri and another new Crocus discovered so recently it doesn’t yet have a name. Here also are Crocus antalyensis subsp. antalyensis and Crocus ziyeretensis. The lovely and rare Iris pamphylica and almost equally attractive Iris stenophylla are both on the agenda. Tiny Crocus minutus and creamy Crocus sarichinarensis decorate Tahtalı Mountain where we’ll see the newly described  Fritillaria asumaniae,Iris unguicularis, Tulipa orphanidae, and orchids such as Ophrys heterochila, Ophrys argolica subspecies lucis and the elegant Ophrys climacis. The parallel ranges of the Ak Dagi and the Beydaglari either side of the fertile Elmali basin are home to very many lovely Crocuses. Crocus beydaglarensis is named for these mountains, but others grow here too including Crocus akdagensis blooming in open pine forests and Crocus salurdagensis on high mountain steppes. Crocus xanthosus with its striking deep yellow-orange throat is named for the old Lycian capital Xanthos which is not far away. Crocus fleschieri is a most striking species with a brilliant reddish style whilst Crocus katrancensis decorates montane steppes with its uniformly soft bluish lilac goblets. Deep in the shady Cedar of Lebanon Forests in the mountains above Fethiye we’ll find the gorgeous, large, and very rare, lilacblue to deep violet-blue Crocus calanthus. White to pale lilac-blue Crocus lyciotauricus is another we’ll see and we’re sure to enjoy the newly-discovered elegant Crocus heilbronniorum populating rocky scrub where Cylcamens mix with abundant yellow Crocus danfordiae. There will be plenty of other spring bulbs on show with stands of Galanthus elwesii blooming under Oriental Planes and the blue stars of Scilla bifolia everywhere. Two special bulbs we’ll encounter on Baba Dağı are Fritillaria forbesii and Scilla forbesii. Alongside paths are Orchis sezikana, yellow Fritillaria carica, blue Chionodoxa forbesii, pink Anthemis rosea, Corydalis pashei, Cyclamen alpinum, and the highly scented Muscari muscarimi. 

Dates and Prices
Crocus lyceotaurus  

Dates 10 – 22 March 2018 (13 days)

Cost London - London = £2375

Cost Antalya - Dalaman = £2150

Deposit = £250

Single Supplement = £170* 

*Does not apply if you are willing to share and a room-mate can be arranged. 

Information
Iris unguicularis Focus

Crocuses. Also other Bulbs and Spring Flowers.

Leaders

Yasemin Konuralp, and local leaders.

Walking

Very easy, no more than three or four miles a day, usually much less, and always at a relaxed pace, ideally suited to photographers. Some slopes are steep and you’ll be near snow quite often!

Included in the Price

All flights. All accommodation, tips, transport and meals in Turkey. Services of your leaders. Please note: items of a personal nature including insurance and visas are not included. Group Size Two leaders will accompany a group of up to 8, three leaders up the maximum of 15.

Accommodation All of the hotels on this tour are either three-star or in most cases four-star hotels and all have rooms with en suite facilities. We start with two nights at the Hotel Villa Turka, a beautifully restored and tastefully decorated mansion in the heart of Alanya’s sprawling castle. Next is the Ali Paşa Konağı near Akseki in the scenic mountain village of Emirasiklar. This is a gorgeous little hotel with fine rooms and an excellent restaurant. After two nights here we move to a quiet location in the old town in the centre of Antalya where we’ve three nights at the Hadrianus Boutique hotel. Next we move to the orchard valleys between the great mountains of Ak Dağı and the Beydağları where we’ve three nights at the Tuba Hotel. The Tuba is a large business-style hotel with spacious light and comfortable rooms. We finish with the something a little different, two nights at the Alesta Yacht hotel. Here you’ll be able to hobnob with the yachting fraternity and enjoy the beautiful harbour views overlooking the harbour from beautifully appointed rooms.

Flights

UK flights are from London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Edinburgh*, Birmingham* or Manchester* via Istanbul to Antalya, returning from Dalaman via Istanbul to any of those UK Airports. Indirect routes from other regional UK Airports* are available.

*These routes may incur a supplement.

Climate

Variable but mostly clear and sunny with daytime temperatures at lower elevations between 12°C and 25°C, however you’ll find it much cooler at higher altitudes where it may get close to freezing early or late in the day. Rain is likely at some point and is occasionally prolonged and is likely to fall as snow at higher altitudes. 

How to Book

Contact us at enquiries@greentours.co.uk or on 01298 83563 to check there is availability for the number of places you require. Download a booking form or contact us and we will send one to you. Complete and send to us. You will receive confirmation of your place and then a detailed information pack will be dispatched to you about twelve weeks before departure. Flower and bird checklists are available. 

Tour Itinerary

A full tour itinerary can be downloaded here

 

Tour Summary
Crocus oreogenus Day 1

Arrive Antalya. Transfer to Alanya.

Day 2

Sarıveliler and the Taşeli Mountains

Day 3

Akseki: Gündoğmuş & Geyik Dağı

Day 4

Akseki: Gembos Yayla

Days 5 & 6

Pamphylia

Day 7

Tahtalı Mountain

Days 8 – 10

Elmali: Ak Dağı and the Beydağları

Days 11 & 12

Fethiye and Baba Dağı

Day 13

Departure from Dalaman

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