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The florigen theory, also known as the hormonal theory of flowering in plants, was put forward by M.Kh. Chailakhyan more than 65 years ago. This theory, reviewed here in its historical progress, gave an impetus to a number of modern genetic and molecular studies of flowering in plants. In turn, results of recent investigations restored to a new level Chailakhyan's ideas about florigen, the hormonal stimulus of flowering.