This publication has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The contents of the publication is the sole responsibility of City of Lieksa and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.
Almost all of the Muezersky District lies in the south of the West-Karelian upland, which is composed of acid rocks. The flora is therefore rather poor compared with Lake Ladoga area in the south and Segozero area in the east, where basic and carbonaceous rocks are common and the range of habitats is much wider. According to the floristic zoning of Karelia, Muezersky District belongs to the Vygozero floristic district (most of the territory) and the Zaonezhje floristic district (a minor part south of the Motko village latitude).
Floristically, the Muezersky District is rather poorly investigated. Botanical surveys were carried out in the late XIX and mid-XX centuries by Finnish botanists in the Rugozero and Reboly village areas, and recently - in the Kostomukshsky reserve and planned Tulos NP territories. The preliminary estimate for the district territory is about 600 vascular plant species. Widespread boreal species dominate. Many southern species, such as lily of the valley
(Convallaria majalis), fingered sedge
(Carex digitata), bracken
(Pteridium aquilinum), wood stitchwort
(Stellaria nemorum), wood-sorrel
(Oxalis acetosella) etc., which are very abundant in the Ladoga area are either rare or absent here. Northern species are also few, although for some, e.g. the Lapland buttercup
(Ranunculus lapponicus), this is the southernmost point of distribution in Karelia.
Simultaneously, western species, which grow more rare further east and hardly ever occur east of the Lake Onega - lake Vygozero - White Sea gradient, demonstrate common and mass occurrence in the Muezersky District. These are e.g. aquatic species such as the lake and spring quillworts
(Isoetes echinospora, I. lacustris), water lobelia
(Lobelia dortmanna), which are red-listed in Russia and Karelia. There grow also some eastern species, some of which, e.g. a rock-cress
(Arabis borealis), the bistort
(Bistorta major), have not penetrated further west, and are absent from Finland, for instance. The dispersal of some eastern species proceeded along secondary habitats and they now reflect old, century-long connections between inner Karelia and the White Sea and Lake Onega areas. Examples of such species are the creeping meadow foxtail
(Alopecurus arundinacea), a subspecies of the turnip-rooted chervil
(Chaerophyllum prescottii), the plicate sweet-grass
(Glyceria notata). Meadows offer habitats to biogeographically highly interesting eastern species of lady's mantles
Alchemilla glabricaulis, A. semilunaris), which in adjacent areas of Finland have been reported from several sites only.
Muezersky District features a number of species listed in the Red Data Books of the Russian Federation (spring and lake quillworts, narrow-leaved marsh-orchid
(Isoetes echinospora, I. lacustris, Dactylorhiza traunsteineri, water lobelia) and Karelia (about 15 species).
The following botanical objects hold the greatest potential for nature tourism:
lake-river systems of the Baltic Sea catchment: r. Lenderka - l. Kuikkaselka - l. Lenderskoye - l. Sulla - l. Leksozero - l. Bolshoje Rovkulskoye; r. Luzhma - l. Tulos - r. Koroppi - l. Koroppi (Lake Ladoga subcatchment), r. Suna - l. Gimolskoye (Lake Onega subcatchment); and of the White Sea catchment: r. Chirka - Kem - r. Kalmozero - l. Mergubskoye, l. Ungozero - r. Unga - r. Onda - l. Ondozero, l. Luvozero - l. Kimasozero - l. Nyuk. The rivers and lakes shelter numerous aquatic and coastal plants, particularly species of western origin, which are gradually growing more rare eastwards, and species red-listed in Russia and Karelia.
meadows in the places of old settlements, where many eastern species can be found that had arrived centuries ago and are extremely rare if at all present further west.
territory of the planned Tulos NP, where 352 species have so far been found and locations of rare, protected and biogeographically interesting species determined.
Andronova Gora mount near vil. Tiksha (utter northeast of the district).
Basic and carbonaceous rocks composing the mount facilitate the presence of
many plant species demanding high soil fertility. This is one of the few
localities in the district where the wood-sorrel is common. Rare and protected
species of small ferns of the genera Asplenium (spleenworts)
and Woodsia occur on the cliffs.
Lake Maksimjarvi area (utter northwest of the district) with a large area of surviving pristine taiga that has preserved all its typical plant species.
upper reaches of the Chirka-Kem river, where carbonaceous rock outcrops on the banks host many rupicolous plant species such as spleenworts and woodsia.