In Praise of Patience

When it arrived four years ago it looked like a withered stick, but there was one person who believed in the translocated carob tree and taught us all how much power there is in trees and how impatient we are. These days the cows are already enjoying its shade.
(reading time: 1.5 minutes)

פרות יושבות תחת לעץ החרוב ונהנות מצילו בפארק הטבע
These days the cows are already enjoying its shade

This is the story of a carob tree that was brought to Ramat Hanadiv about four years ago, withered and broken. Then, it looked like a miserable stick, and due to its sad appearance we didn’t believe it would recover. However, Mahfouz, a perceptive, experienced ranger in the Nature Park, was not shocked by its appearance; he planted it, showered it with love, and told all the non-believers and ridiculers two words: ‘Wait p-a-t-i-e-n-t-l-y!’.

Indeed, the tree became stronger and recovered. After some time it produced a healthy branch, and then another, followed by leaves and flowers. Over four years it grew into a beautiful, strong tree that in the future will give shade and fruit just like its brothers, the other carob trees in the park, and live for hundreds more years.

Another beloved carob tree, which was hit during the last storm of 2023, is the ancient carob tree growing right out of the ruins of Horvat ‘Aqav (the red trail – the Manor trail). The beautiful, large tree broke during the last winter storm and was treated soon after; it was significantly pruned and two supporting poles were added. In addition, the nearby carob trees had their canopies pruned into a taller shape and the surrounding shrubs were also pruned.

The carob is an evergreen tree with a broad canopy that can reach a height of up to 12 metres! It’s a common tree and in some regions even constitutes the main component of the ‘carob-mastic tree’ plant community. But unlike the other trees in Israel, which flower in the spring, the carob flowering season peaks in late summer to early August. Most carob trees are dioecious, meaning that the flowers on each tree are either all female or all male. The trunk may reach a great width and its root system is deep and highly branched. When it’s damaged by fire or cutting, the stump produces new branches. The sweet fruit is a source of honey, sweets, cake flour, a coffee substitute, and medicinal preparations.

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