21 fig tree enclosures are restored by the Land Stewardship Scheme

It is noticeable, without paying much attention, that one of the icons of the Menorcan agricultural landscape has been losing its strength and vigor over the last few years. We are referring to the fig tree, this tree of dry land that with very little care was producing golden gifts in the middle of August.

The Land Stewardship Scheme has started a series of initiatives to encourage its restoration. The object is to contribute to the maintenance of the unique landscape that these trees create and, at the same time, diversify produce from those interested farms.

During the last year, through the agricultural days of volunteering, 21 fig tree enclosures have been restored.  Volunteer help on the farms has enabled the clearing out of wild olive bushes and brambles that invaded the enclosures, maintaining the dry stone wall structures, pruning fig trees that still had living branches and eliminating those that were completely dead and planting new ones.

Fig trees, amongst other dry wood trees, are planted in the middle of the countryside and dry stonewalls are built round them to protect them from the cattle. However, it is a characteristic to see the animals looking for some fallen figs around the enclosures.

As well as the restoration of some of the enclosures, 120 fig plants have been bought to distribute between the farms. The purchase has been diverse:  from the “paratjales” with their distinctive broken red fruit, to the sweetness of the white lady’s neck, through to the bold, first batch of the summer, of the “fig flower” and finishing with the bardissot variety.

The last few years have seen a decline in the figs of Menorca. certainly  the effect of climate change and lack of water, combined with no maintenance, are some of the factors that come into play in lowering the crop defences against disease.

Harvest figs again at the end of August to accompany an oliaigua or enjoy the smell of ripe figs. Look for the fresh green leaves in summer or enjoy the simple tastes from a bunch of figs picked in the early morning and eating them fresh from the night. We can retain some of those pleasures if we continue with the restoration of the emblematic fig trees in Menorca.

The agreement between GOB and the farms signed up to the Land Stewardship Scheme gives the farms the option to diversify their products and maintain distinctive landscape features such as the fig tree enclosures. That is only one of the many options that is gained from the mutual benefit between the farms and volunteers each year. Many thanks to all those who took part in the volunteering activities.

The activity has the economic support of the Menorca Island Council, the Menorca Preservation Fund and the MAVA Foundation.

Workshop at the Recuperation Centre for Wildlife: Animal Colours

There is a new workshop for all the family at the Recuperation Centre for Wildlife this Tuesday 12 July at 18.30

Think about the colours of animals: some tones are very flashy while others serve for concealment. What role does the appearance of animals play in their lives and survival? We can find out through games. Continue reading Workshop at the Recuperation Centre for Wildlife: Animal Colours

Letter received by the Alaior Town Council (2): The illegal swimming pools of Torre Vella

This is the second written document dedicated to the Alaior Town Council, relating to the controversy of access to files that are conflictive:  the Hotels of Son Bou (see the previous written document) and the illegal works of the agro tourism hotel of Torre Vella. Here we can learn more details of this second case. Continue reading Letter received by the Alaior Town Council (2): The illegal swimming pools of Torre Vella

Son Bou Hotels: a continuing saga

The controversy of the Son Bou Hotels continues. One chapter closes and another opens.

As will be remembered, in 2017, the property company presented a project affirming two towers. As a result, GOB has been consulting the documentation relating to these two large existing edifices on the beach. They represent one of the worst impacts made on the landscape and occurred in the seventies at the beginning of the increase in tourism. Continue reading Son Bou Hotels: a continuing saga

Sale of kitchen garden seedlings at GOB’s Es Viver

Es Viver, GOB, has a sale of summer seedlings. We are at the end of the season for planting summer vegetables. Es Viver has a sale of local organic kitchen garden plants: different sorts of tomatoes, peppers, aubergines, melons, water melons, pumpkins…

Es Viver, GOB, is a project that aims to promote an environmentally friendly use of the land. It produces certified ecological plants that are native to the island for sustainable gardening: aromatic and kitchen plants, various varieties of indigenous kitchen garden seedlings, plants for cut flowers, soil and ecological fertilizer. It also designs and maintains sustainable gardens and green filtres that are purification systems of residual water using aquatic plants.

We are open from Monday to Saturday, 10.30 to 13.30. Es Viver is in Mahon on the airport road near the old Mestral. 650 350 172 and 971 350 762, esviver@gobmenorca.com.

Sunday, open doors to the Wildlife Recuperation Centre

This Sunday, 5 June, will be an open day at the Centre of Recuperation for Wild Animals in Ciutadella. It is an opportunity to visit it on the Open Doors day between 10.00 and 14.00 hours. You will be able to see the animals that live there and to learn about the work that is done to look after the wild animals of Menorca. This open day is made possible with the help of Lithica and the Ciutadella Town Hall, to celebrate the World Day of the Environment. Continue reading Sunday, open doors to the Wildlife Recuperation Centre

Conscientious Ecology