ŞANLIURFA – Anadolu Agency
Karagül (“Black rose” in Turkish), a unique rose that only grows in the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa’s Halfeti district in the world, its production has stopped due to changing ecological dynamics, but is set to be produced in greenhouses and be reached out to international floral markets with a new project.
The production of karagül, which attracts many local and foreign tourists for its unique color and smell, has neared extinction because of the changing ecological balance in Halfeti, which is renowned for being left underwater thanks to the Birecik Dam.
Within the scope of a project for the recovery of Halfeti’s iconic rose and to bring it in the cut flower sector, which is supported by the General Directorate of Agricultural Researches and Politics (TAGEM), a company that produces cut roses with modern techniques in the Organized Industrial Zone in Şanlıurfa has started working on growing karagül in a greenhouse.
The roses to be produced in the greenhouse, where the processes of shading, fertilization, ventilation, irrigation, heating, cooling and humidification are carried out with computers in order to ensure optimal conditions for growth, and is expected to be offered to domestic and international markets.
The company’s managing director, Serhan Işıkan, said the company gave importance to research, development and technology and that they have been carrying out joint programs with universities.
Işıkan said it was a three-year project aiming to completely reclaim karagül and to preserve its existence.
“Here, we want to obtain a new karagül species with more superior properties than the existing karagül after crossbreeding it with other red and dark red roses in different species. We aim to improve the species of karagül for both outer space and cut flower and gain them in the sector,” Işıkan said. High demand already
Işıkan said they have already started receiving demands from foreign and local customers who heard about the project.
“The project is made up of two different stages. The first stage includes the reclamation of the Halfeti rose and the development of new Halfeti rose species. The second stage is radiation treatment to create new species. The Halfeti rose blooms only in the spring and fall. Its flower is in almost black color. With this project, our goal and expectation is to produce new roses which blossoms in black throughout the year and can be used both in outer spaces and as a cut flower. We receive too many demands from abroad for the black rose but we don’t want to answer them before we finish the project. The Halfeti rose is already a known product.
Our customers have demanded the roses after they heard about the project. I hope we will be successful in this project,” he said.
Işıkan said they were in collaboration with academics from universities, and the reclaimed roses were sent to the Atomic Energy Agency.