Natural sites

Natural sites include unique and irreplaceable complexes that are very valuable from the ecological, scientific, cultural and esthetical points of view as well as objects of natural and man-made origin.

On the territory of presentMoscownear the former villages of Kolomenskoye and Dyakovo one can see unique relief forms, geological outcrops, boulders, long-living trees and valuable plant communities.

Natural sites located on the territory of the museum number 15 units including 8 geological, 3 natural and 4 floral complexes.

Kolomenskoye represents a valuable national landscape with its ancient natural relief and unique flora surviving and rich evidence of human activity of the XVI-XX centuries preserved.

Most of the territory is occupied with wide parks, picturesque ravines, high hills and theMoskvaRiverwaters. Even inMoscow, a city rich in historical monuments, the Kolomenskoye estate plays a particular role being the only reserve of the kind including historical, architectural, archeological and natural monuments and located almost in the center of the city.

About 15 natural sites were selected in order to preserve the most valuable natural spots on the territory of the museum-reserve and a catalogue with a description was prepared in 1999. The natural objects thus registered are to be used in compliance with special regulations and enjoy particular maintaining conditions as well as legal support.

Gardens in the Kolomenskoye estate

In the XVII century, the Kolomensloye summer residence included six gardens where hundreds of apple and pear trees, currant and gooseberry bushes and raspberrycanes grew; fruit trees not growing naturally in the moderate climatic zones were planted. Those who damaged fruit and vegetable gardens that were carefully looked after had to be punished.

Gardens had primarily household functions as fruits and berries were gathered for the Tsar’s table. Only three out of six gardens (Kazansky, Dyakovo and Ascension) have been preserved till our days.

In 1997-1999, restoration works were held and the historic planning ofKazanskyGardenwas reconstructed according to the blueprints made in 1767. The territory of the garden was divided into square sections with the help of gravel paths and flowerbeds where 30 various types of flowers were planted.

Floral sites

Oak-tree grove

The oak-tree grove comprises a park section located at the Tsar’s Courtyard close to the Sitny Yard with oak-trees (about 400-600 years old), lindens and elms (about 200 years old) and maples (about 40-80 years old) as well as a small part of theAscensionGarden where three 500 year old oak-trees grow.

Ash-tree grove

The ash-tree grove is located in the yard of the Dyakovo church and the adjoining part of the Golosov Ravine. This is a deciduous forest area with 40-80 years-old common ash-trees and two ash-trees that reached the age of 200 years.

Three willows

Three 200 years old white willows grow near the historicalDyakovo Roadon the slope leading to theMoskvaRiver.

Rare herbs

Orchis (Orchid family), an herb rare forMoscowand its region, is growing on a wet meadow that makes part of the Dyakovo floodplain.

Natural complexes

The Moskva River floodplain in Dyakovo

On this territory, the natural soil mantle and vegetation with quite a rich flora have been preserved. Many species of herbs rare toMoscowand its region such as Acorus calamus (or Sweet Flag), Iris pseudacorus (yellow flag, yellow iris), The Heath Spotted Orchid, Dianthus fischeri, Campanula (or bellflower) and others grow on meadows (even swampy ones).

Dyakovo Ravine

This ravine is rarely visited because two thirds of its bottom length is flooded and the slope angle is about 25-40o. Relic and rare plant species such as Thymus marschalliaus, Festuca valesiaca (fescue) and others have been preserved there.

Golosov Ravine

The Golosov Ravine can be conventionally divided into three main parts. In the downstream the slopes are gentle, the bottom is broad and flat, near the outfall there are two ponds and a hydrotechnical system. Besides, one can find three natural sites there: the Little Tub spring group, the Maiden Stone, and the Goose Stone. The upstream part of the ravine has gentler slopes covered with rare trees (the ash-tree grove near the Dyakovo hill, oak-trees, elms, lindens, etc.), bushes (Euonymus verrucosus, Viburnum opulus, Sambucus racemosa or Red Elderberry, etc.) and herbs, including those that are rare forMoscow(Origanum, Betonica, Campanula or bellflower, etc.).

Geological sites

Among geological sites there are the following natural monuments:

Spring in the Moskva River valley near the Church of the Ascension

This is an outlet of underground waters on the slope of theMoskvaRiverbank.

The Little Tub spring group in the Golosov Ravine

This is an outlet of underground waters. There are five springs that are known. According to folk legends the waters of these springs have healing properties.

Maiden Stone in the Golosov Ravine

This is a monolithic quartz sandstone deepened in the ground with an open surface of about 2.5 sq.m. The Maiden Stone is not only a unique natural object but also a historical monument: it is considered to be a pagan ritual symbol often mentioned in legends.

Landfall stairs near the Church of Beheading of St. John the Forerunner

This is part of an ancient landfall zone and an example of a landfall relief that has been just slightly influenced by the anthropogenic factor.

Boulders and outcrops of Lower Cretaceous (Aptian) sands on the hill slope of the Dyakovo village

Some boulders of the Ice Age period were found on this territory. On the top of the hill there is an ancient tumulus, an archeological monument that was built about 2,400 years ago.

Black Jurassic clay outcrop on the ‘Devil’s town’ landfall stair

This is the lower part of an old landfall body made up by Upper Volgian Jurassic clays that are considered to make up a water-resisting line in the Moscow region preventing from penetration of contaminating elements into the lower coal water-bearing system used as a drinking water resource. Multi-coloured sands have been discovered above the Jurassic clay layer.

Outcrop of a layer between Moscow moraine and chalk deposits

This layer came out as a result of slope erosion when light-yellow sands with isinglass stones can be found under the reddish-brown loams ofMoscowmoraine. It is a very rare outcrop on theterritoryofMoscow.

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