Palmeral of Elche

Palmeral of Elche

The Palmeral of Elche (Spanish: Palmeral de Elche, Valencian: Palmerar d’Elx) is a plantation of palm trees in the Spanish province of Alicante. It is the largest palm grove (Spanish: palmeral) in Europe and one of the largest in the world, surpassed in size only by some in Arab countries.[clarification needed]

The Palmeral includes the Parque Municipal and many other orchards (huertos), covering over 3.5 km2 (1.4 sq mi), including 1.5 km2 (0.58 sq mi) within the city of Elche (Elx). It contains more than 11,000 palm trees, mostly date palms (Phoenix dactylifera), with individual specimens up to 300 years old. At its peak, in the 18th century, it may have covered an area twice as large, with up to 200,000 trees. The dates are harvested in December. A famous date palm is the “Imperial Palm” (Palmera Imperial), with 7 stems in the shape of a candelabra, named after Elisabeth, known as Sissi, the Empress consort of Franz Joseph, who visited the plantation in 1894.

It is thought that palms were originally planted in this location as early as the 5th century BC by Carthaginians who settled in south-east Spain. The plantation survived under the Romans and was expanded under the rule of the Moors, including the irrigation system extended in the times of Abd ar-Rahman I and which remains in use. The formal landscape of the palmeral that still exists today was created when the city was under Moorish control in the 10th century. This transfer of landscape and agricultural practices from one culture and continent to another (Moorish Africa to Christian Europe) is the reason for inclusion as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Although the area has an annual rainfall of only 300 mm (12 in), the palm trees planted along a network of irrigation canals from the salty River Vinalopó creates a patchwork of agricultural plots (huertos), each demarcated and shaded by the palm trees to create a protected microclimate. Laws were passed to protect the plantation after the Reconquista.

In 2005, it was discovered that the larvae of the red palm weevil (Rhynchophorus ferrugineus) had infested some trees, laying its eggs inside the stems.

Outline
The Palmeral of Elche (Spanish: Palmeral de Elche, Valencian: Palmerar d'Elx) is a plantation of palm trees in the Spanish province of Alicante.

Recommended world heritage video

  1. Monuments of Oviedo and the Kingdom of the Asturias

    Monuments of Oviedo and the Kingdom of the Asturias

  2. Rock Art of the Mediterranean Basin on the Iberian Peninsula

    Rock Art of the Mediterranean Basin on the Iberian Peninsula

  3. Schokland and Surroundings

    Schokland and Surroundings

  1. Historic Centre of Riga

    Historic Centre of Riga

  2. Acropolis, Athens

    Acropolis, Athens

  3. Lugo

    Lugo

  1. Universidade de Coimbra

    Universidade de Coimbra

  2. Laponian Area

    Laponian Area

  3. Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes

    Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes

  1. San Millán Yuso and Suso Monasteries

    San Millán Yuso and Suso Monasteries

  2. Wieliczka Salt Mine

    Wieliczka Salt Mine

  3. Aranjuez Cultural Landscape

    Aranjuez Cultural Landscape

  1. Semmering Railway

    Semmering Railway

  2. Monastic Island of Reichenau

    Monastic Island of Reichenau

  3. Wachau Cultural Landscape

    Wachau Cultural Landscape

  1. Portovenere, Cinque Terre, and the Islands (Palmaria, Tino and Tinetto)

    Portovenere, Cinque Terre, and the Islands (Palmaria, Tino and Tinetto)

  2. Ilulissat Icefjord

    Ilulissat Icefjord

  3. Old and New Towns of Edinburgh

    Old and New Towns of Edinburgh

  1. Costiera Amalfitana

    Costiera Amalfitana

  2. City of Graz – Historic Centre and Schloss Eggenberg

    City of Graz – Historic Centre and Schloss Eggenberg

  3. Monastery of the Hieronymites and Tower of Belém in Lisbon

    Monastery of the Hieronymites and Tower of Belém in Lisbon

  1. Pitons, cirques and remparts of Reunion Island

    Pitons, cirques and remparts of Reunion Island

  2. Palau de la Música Catalana and Hospital de Sant Pau, Barcelona

    Palau de la Música Catalana and Hospital de Sant Pau, Barcelona

  3. Limes

    Limes

  1. Lavaux, Vineyard Terraces

    Lavaux, Vineyard Terraces

  2. Hanseatic City of Lübeck

    Hanseatic City of Lübeck

  3. L’viv – the Ensemble of the Historic Centre

    L’viv – the Ensemble of the Historic Centre

  1. La Lonja de la Seda de Valencia

    La Lonja de la Seda de Valencia

  2. Historic Centres of Stralsund and Wismar

    Historic Centres of Stralsund and Wismar

  3. Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida

    Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida

  1. Historic Walled Town of Cuenca

    Historic Walled Town of Cuenca

  2. Abbey and Altenmünster of Lorsch

    Abbey and Altenmünster of Lorsch

  3. Las Médulas

    Las Médulas

  1. The Trulli of Alberobello

    The Trulli of Alberobello

  2. Val d’Orcia

    Val d’Orcia

  3. Rila Monastery

    Rila Monastery

  1. Røros Mining Town and the Circumference

    Røros Mining Town and the Circumference

  2. Litomyšl Castle

    Litomyšl Castle

  3. Palau de la Música Catalana and Hospital de Sant Pau, Barcelona

    Palau de la Música Catalana and Hospital de Sant Pau, Barcelona

facebook comments
Comment
To the Top