The Minister of Republic of Turkey Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock, Mehdi Eker had a meeting with the members of the press to advertise the Turkey's first major and Europe's second largest Botanical Garden, 'National Botanical Garden of Turkey (NBGT)'. While the meeting with the natural view of the large pond of the Garden, he demonstrated the details of the NBGT Project and indicated that the NBGT would be the insurance of the plant genetic resources of Turkey. He said that the Ministry invested 303 million Turkish Liras (TL) for the project, whose groundbreaking ceremony was performed in 2013.
The Minister Eker mentioned the criteria of Botanical Gardens Conservation International and he emphasized that NBGT was the first botanical garden of Turkey accommodating these criteria. He also stated that there were more than 3 thousand Botanical Gardens in the world, however, not all of them accommodated these criteria.
Minister Eker indicated that the idea of constitution of NBGT had been created a long time ago and the area of NBGT had been planted by more than 150 thousand seedlings, most of which were Black Pine and Cedrus, for 10 years. The Minister said 1500 species naturally distributed in field of TMBB would be reached to 12000 species.
By emphasizing the Turkey's rich plant biodiversity and high rated endemism, he explained the purposes of creating NBGT as conservation of the plant biodiversity, recording and maintaining the flora of Turkey, exhibition and creating these plant's own natural habitats. He also reminded the 'Seed and Gene Bank' which was founded for conserving the plant diversity and reached 117 thousand 780 samples. He also mentioned that, the Ministry inaugurated recently the Geophyte Research Centre in Yalova and the Agricultural Biotechnology Centre for the same purposes.
The Minister Eker pointed out that, 65 percentage of construction of the Main Entrance Building and 80 percentage of building the greenhouses complex and production parcels of NBGT were finished and in the second half of the year 2016, the NBGT would be public. He informed the members of press about the thematic greenhouse, plant palace, including xerophytes, tropical plants, equatorial plants, aquatic plants, steppe and endemic plants.
After this meeting, Minister Eker and the press members had a trip in the garden and took photographs near the small pond of NBGT.