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July 2003-July 2010InteractiveDig Sagalassos
View of the arable fields between Sagalassos and Aglasun of which the vegetation was recorded.
The weedy plant Centaurea depressa, which grows today in the arable fields below Sagalassos

Photos courtesy Sagalassos Archaeological Research Project. Click on images to enlarge.
by Marc Waelkens

Botanical Survey: June 29-July 1, 2004

This week's botanical activities, carried out by Leo Vanhecke (botanist) and Thijs Van Thuyne (macrobotanist), now also joined by Veronique De Laet (geomorphologist) again focused on three topics:

  1. Recent field analysis. Recording of the vegetation of arable fields continued in different parts of the territory. This week, 26 such records were completed, bringing the total for this year to 61. The recording was now carried out in the western and eastern part of the territory, and between Sagalassos and the nearby city of Aglasun (see picture). Weedy plants like Centaurea depressa are quite common nowadays (see picture). Later we will compare these records with the assemblages from the Sagalassos excavations. Such comparison can reveal the ancient growing spots of cereals or other domesticates.

  2. Reference collection of vascular plants. As usual we collected all species of vascular plants new for the inventory of the region, as well as other species of special interest. After identification the whole of this collection forms a reference collection useful for the identification of seeds ands fruits and for other related research. In total, we have collected 505 specimens and 85 samples of fructifying plants with seeds this year. At present, the inventory of vascular plants growing in the Sagalassos territory has reached some 900 different taxa.

  3. Harvest analysis. Analysis of recent crops can shed light on possible changes in weed availability in arable lands compared to the late Roman period. Moreover it is useful to see what kind of weeds escape the threshing process and will be stored together with the cereals (see picture). Therefore, a number of samples have been taken from recent crop material (cereals as well as fodder). These will be studied, quantified, and compared with the charred material of the Sagalassos excavations. In the upcoming weeks, more of these samples will be taken in different parts of the historical territory of Sagalassos.
Recent crop material composed of barley and fodder
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