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The olive tree

The olive tree with its distinctive gnarled trunk, its dense branching system and its small, silvery-green leaves is one of the oldest known cultured trees in the world. Originally cultivated 6000 years ago, it spread quickly throughout the Mediterranean area and is today a symbol of the Mediterranean landscape, climate and way of life.

Olive trees grow slowly, but they can reach up to 20 metres in height and attain a great age. Some examples are several hundred years old - the oldest known olive tree in Italy stands in Trevi and is estimated to be 1700 years old.