If you are driving around the countryside of Mallorca and see row upon row of shapely trees too large to be olive trees, the chances are you are looking at fields of almond trees.
This crop was first grown in the 19th century after majorca's wine industry took a bashing from the phylloxera plague (phylloxera is a root louse that attacks the roots of the grape vine, killing the plant). As the grape wines were pretty much wiped out, Mallorcan farmers decided to plant almond trees in their place.
It is estimated that there are now 5 million almond trees on Majorca, which cover 55,000 hectares of land, making it one of the major crops of the island. A highlight of the year is when the almond trees blossom (generally February, but this is weather dependant) - wonderful pink and white blossoms cover the land. The Mediterranean climate and low water content means Mallorcan almonds have a higher fat content than almonds from other countries, reaching 60% in some cases, and have a sweet flavour. Almonds are harvested towards the end of August.
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