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Borina – Gallows hill

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Another island of greenery in Nitra is the forested elevation Gallows Hill (Šibeničný vrch, 218 m), which is a little bit lower than the Calvary lying on the east. A smaller fort stood here in the times of Great Moravia. The inhabitants of Nitra built a small renaissance outlook on the Gallows Hill, which is known as the „Turecká varta“ on the turn of 16th and 17th centuries. The watchtower was built as a shelter from Turkish invasions. Recently it has been a very popular outdoor place for the inhabitants.

In the past, this hill was known under the name Borina. The name is derived from pines, which were planted here and from the main part of the ground cover on Gallows Hill. The name Gallows Hill was used since 1848 when the gallows were moved here from the town cemetery.

A part of the forest  cover on Gallows Hill is except the pine made by the small-leaved limetree. In the border parts, mainly on the southwest and west of Gallows Hill, other trees can be found, for example: the Turkey oak or the English oak. The summer ground cover evokes a natural impression. From the thermophilic bushes predominate – the euonymus verrucosus, spindle, the St. Lucy cherry and other. Remains of once broad meadow ground covers can be found on a small area on the western border of Gallows Hill. Typical steppe grass can be found here – festuca valesiana, stipa capillata with its curly awns and the rare botriochlora ischaemum. During spring the pheasant´s eye and the veronica prostrata decorate the area. The summer species are the not so striking but really rare bupleurum affine, the small yellow onion, the field eryngo – a prickly roundish plant, which is known as the „steppe runner“. This plant got this name because the plant rolls on the ground by the wind to spread its seeds.

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