Finale Bellflowers and Other Specialised Crag-Top Flora
Finale’s famous rocky free-climbing cliffs are populated by chasmophytic vegetation – creepers whose roots find space withing the rocky cracks of craggy habitats. These wild flora species are protected under Directive 92/43/EEC – Conservation of Natural Habitats on Wild Flora and Fauna.
Finale Bellflowers (Campanula isophylla) – also called “same-leaf bellflowers” to distinguish them from other bell-shaped flowers with differently shaped foliage both at the base and along the length of the stem – are the most important endemic species among Ligurian flora, and only grows between Cape Noli and Verezzi and in the adjacent hinterland. There are two different populations: the main one grows on the limestone cliffs between sea level and 400 metres of altitude; the other grows seven kilometres away atop the (non-calcareous/limestone) cliffs of Bric Gettina in Rialto near Colle del Melogno (Italian: Melogno Hill), where it was discovered in 2009. The two patches blossom at different times because of the considerable differences in altitude.
MORE INFORMATION – Climbing Flora
Limestone cliffs are also populated by Finale dandelions (Leontodon Anomalus var. Finalensis), which are completely separate from the endemism of the mountain range of the Apuane Alps. In summer, this bright yellow population stands out against Finale Stone.
Finale is also home to Asplenium Trichomanes subsp. Inexpectans, a small spleenwort fern, whose only difference from the main species lies in the number of chromosomes. Asplenium inexpectans grows alongside species that have adapted to different environmental conditions, such as intense sunlight, like silver ragwort (Jacobaea maritima); shade, like Moehringia muscosa and liverwort (Hepatica nobilis); or even pollution, like Parietaria judaica, commonly known as the “asthma weed”.