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A trip to the land of endangered ancient olive trees

They are now increasingly protected after being seen as an invaluable part of Spain's heritage

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A millennia-old olive tree, famous for "staring" in the film The Olive by Spanish director Iciar Bollain, in an olive grove in the municipality of Ulldecona in Catalonia, Spain. Various towns and cities in Valencia, Catalonia and Aragon have inventoried nearly 5,000 of the oldest trees with a view to safeguarding them.

Traiguera, Spain

THE sun sets in eastern Spain and dozens of ancient olive trees cast long shadows on the ground.

Once dug up and sold as luxury items for the wealthy, they are increasingly protected as farmers and authorities realise these trees, some of which were planted by the

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