Why Turkey?

Turkey is situated at the cross roads of Asia and Europe.  The nation’s total territory is approximately 780,000 km2.  The population exceeds 80 million. Over 90% of Turkey’s population lives in urban areas.  The national literacy rate is over 95%. Turkey’s GDP ranks in the world’s top 20. 


Turkey is a rich country in terms of biodiversity among the countries in the northern hemisphere.

There are approximately  9,000 vascular plant species.  Turkey which it contains, as well as being rich in endemic species of flora with around 2991 has an important place among other countries.

If the floristic diversity of Turkey and continental Europe which covers west of Urals and has approximately 11.000 species is compared it can be said that Turkey has a continental feature in respect to floristic diversity.

Edaphic diversity is one of the main biodiversity reasons of Turkey. Within Europe, gypsum soils are mainly restricted to Turkey and Spain (Food and Agriculture Organization 1990).


Turkey is an important endemism center because of hosting many different parent material types such as marnly, marnly gypsum, gypsum, serpentine.

 Massive gypsum deposits cover large areas in central Anatolia, and small islands of gypsum soil occur in other regions of Turkey. These areas constitute important endemism and gene diversification centres for Turkey, showing remarkably high floristic diversity and a plethora of rare species. 

Turkey  is remarkably rich in narrow gypsum endemics, with more than 20 species showing very restricted distribution (limited to one or two localities) within gypsum soils.  Turkey seems, therefore, a very suitable territory for the analysis of the ecology of narrow gypsum endemics.