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Dear Colleagues,

I feel honored to invite you on behalf of our Executive Board of the Flora Research Society  to 13th OPTIMA congress to be organized in Antalya between March 22 – 26,  2010.  This congress is organized by the Flora Research Association under my presidency and the support of Akdeniz University which is a valuable scientific institution of the region.  

As is known OPTIMA, Organization for the Phyto-Taxonomic Investigation of the Mediterranean Area organizes congresses for the plant taxonomists of the Mediterranean and other countries to meet and exchange views on the flora and the vegetation of this region in every three years in a different country of the Mediterranean region.  The previous OPTIMA congress in Turkey was organized in 1986 in Istanbul.

Approximately 300 – 400 botanists participate in this Congress and the participating scientists listen to the lectures given by learned plant taxonomists and other scientists in 10-12 sessions each on a different topic organized by a prominent scientist.

Turkey has make a remarkable progress in the Floristic Plant Science within the last 30 years and the universities in Turkey are abound with experienced and young botanists. However, the lack of communication and interaction between the Turkish and foreign scientists is seen as a big handicap. Therefore. this congress will provide scientists an opportunity to meet each other and interact. The Congress will be held at a holiday resort in the Belek region of Antalya in Southern Turkey.  The congress will consist of lectures and a 1 day excursion to the nearby Taurus mountains to observe the rich and diverse spring flora, especially the geophytes and Abies cilicica over the high plateaus.   Besides these, participants will also have an opportunity to visit other historical and floristic sites in Antalya including   regional plant associations such as natural forests of Cedrus libani and Cupressus sempervirens etc.).This congress will give an important and rare opportunity to the botanical scientists interested in the plant life of Turkey and the Mediterranean region in a typical floristic geography having full of diversity and attractive natural beauties blended with cultural and historical richnesses.

On behalf of the Flora Research Society

Tuna Ekim