ARBORETUMUL SIMERIA

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SHORT RETROSPECTIVE  
     
 
ing. Flaviu POPESCU; dr.ing.Stelian RADU, ing. Corina COANDA
 
 
Forest Research and Management Institute - Station Simeria
 

At the beginning of the XVIII-th century it started to outline, on the left bank of Mures-river, a place which is considered nowadays, by well-known specialists "a national monument in the park-art", and at the sometime the oldest and the most valuable collection of exotic ligneous plants and native plants of Romania, "The Arboretum Simeria".
Being a dendrological reservation and landscape, having a unique value for the national patrimony, the Simeria Arboretum was created at the beginning of the XVIII-th century by arrangement of the natural riverside coppices of Mures river meadows in a British and romantic manner.
The first exotic species were brought in the middle of the XVIII-th century. An old writing from 1763 (the oldest park certificates) remembers about an alley planted with common chest-nut trees (Aesculus hippocastanum), and a writing from 1860 informs that in the second half of the XVIII-th century it was brought the locust tree, this fact being the oldest acclimation experiment for this specie made in our country.
During the history the park belonged successively to Hungarian nobility families (Gyulay, Kun, Fay and Ocskay) and it was inherited by feminine descendents.
The owner of the park in 1848 was count Kun, and during the Revolution of 1848 were a lot of damages including the building damages.
Between 1870 - 1880 were made the first remedies on the park and the building, and started following clear plans of enrichment of the park, by introducing various species of the Fareast and North America, and were made seeds exchange with foreign countries.
The next owner after count Kun is Fay Bela, schooled person, naturalist members of Hungarian Academy of Science, who enriched the park collection by planting exotic species. He wrote some scientific writings regarding the acclimation of species.
After 1918, Fay Bela was established in Simeria, in his family got Ocskay is town as son-in-low, who was an artist of nobility origin, and who had huge artistic sense the rearranged the plants in the park creating new landscapes. It is possible that the whole landscapes conception to be the idea of the many landscaping artists of that time, but is this not mentioned. It seems that between 1924 and 1938 had worked here as a gardener Ludwig Bucek from Germany.

After the nationalization of 1949 the Park was administrated by "Ocolul Silvic"-Simeria. In 1952 the Park was declared experimental forest ground. In 1954 was made the Research and Forestry Experimentation STATION Simeria, which lately took as material base the Dendrological Park. Law at the Nature Monument Committee suggestion, receiving at the same time preserves the park the name of "Nature Monument" - dendrological reservation.
The park's dendrological collection inherited by the old contained 250 taxoni, nowadays being 2165. Trough, we have to mention that the landscape assembly, the architectural style and the value, given by oldness and taxonomic grandeur of collection, proves an old and constant preoccupation of the last owners for the landscape architecture and for the introduction of rare exotic species.
We have to recognize the merits of the owners who did maintained and developed the park over 2 centuries and to remember also the merit of administration and ICAS and prof. I. Popescu Zeletin and ing. Aurel Hulea who had save this vegetal treasure from destruction.
In 1954 into Arboretum precincts was made the Research and Forestry Experimental Station - Simeria. It releases at the very beginning important preservation actions, ameliorating and developing actions. The emphasis was laid on landscape maintaining and landscapes ameliorating, the collection enriching, building new pilot units for exotic species that have forestry interest. It also was laid on acclimation and selection works, and to create a powerful resource for the multiplication of forestry and ornamental species both for Arboretum necessities and for other parks and gardens necessities, but also for green gardens of the cities.
The forestry, dendrological landscape, didactic and recuperative importance of this "sit" of national patrimony and even international was confirmed and certified by outstanding representatives of science from our country and abroad who had visited the park during the last 4 decades.
"The meaning of dendrological parks its very important for science and national economy, even people consider them, first of all, just ornamental and recreation parks. The wonderful park from Simeria accomplishes for many decades its threefold mission, evolving in the recent time to the meaning of forestry research station of first rank.

The majesty of old arbors makes on unbelievable an esthetical effect, together with the forest environment, and Natural River meadow, heaving elegant gardening arrangement […]. Paying a visit to this scientific plant, which makes a "magnum experimentum" for long time, it's instructive and invigorating. The seed beds were recently enlarged and enriched, till now, our botanical gardens and public parks, having precious species, which will give their contribution to new forests creation, valuable for future."

These phrases full of quintessence, rich in objective ideas belong to a scientific outstanding representative - Prof. Al. Borza. They hold the actuality and constitute authentically landmarks into Arboretum Simeria development.
     

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Photo: Corina Coanda, Radu Stelian  
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