Mo. garden to hold conference on endangered plants

ST. LOUIS (AP) - The Missouri Botanical Garden will sponsor the first meeting of scientists from the U.S. and former Soviet Union on protecting plant life in the Caucasus region.

Botanists from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Russia and Turkey will meet Oct. 2-8 at the St. Louis institution to create a list of the most endangered plants in the Caucasus Mountains. A book is also planned.

Vegetation in the Caucasus is diverse, but political unrest has kept botanists and conservationists outside the former Soviet Union from working with the region's rare and endangered plants.

Botanical Garden officials hope the meeting will lead to more collaboration in the biodiversity hot spot.

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