The first documentation about the flora in the Colosseum area dates back to 1643. Domenico Panaroli made the first catalogue of its plants. 684 species have been identified there. In 1871 there were some attempts to eradicate the vegetation, because there were serious concerns, the flora could damage the monument.
242 species have been identified today, and 200 of the species first identified by Panaroli, still remain in the area.