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New Techniques for Saving Endangered Lilacs

Belgorod State University's Botanical Garden is rapidly becoming a global centre for lilac research and cultivation. Tatyana Polyakova, Vice-President of the International Lilac Society, and Professor Olga Aladina were in town to help

The two experts from Moscow brought more than 60 varieties of lilac to our University, and demonstrated the latest techniques for grafting plants and vaccinating them against diseases. These plants will be ready for transplant later in the year. Ms Polyakova is impressed with our collection,

The collection at this University's Botanical Garden will soon be unique. When replenishing the stock here, primarily, we focus on the newest varieties that are not currently available in other botanical gardens. The second important component of our work is our attempt to collect varieties that are on the verge of extinction throughout the world. I am also the Co-Chair of the International Committee for the Conservation of Rare and Endangered Varieties and Species of Lilacs, and we have included Belgorod State University's Botanical Garden in our program.

The Belgorod Lilac project, which will last another two years, will feature heavily in Russia's lilac related events and breeding programs. In its first year, the project has seen 169 varieties of lilac planted, with another 72 varieties waiting in the Laboratory greenhouses for transplant this spring. The new additions will get similar treatment soon thereafter. By the end of the year another 24 varieties are expected to arrive in Belgorod.

 Translated by I P Turner, Centre for Foreign Language and Academic Writing

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