A woman looks at the 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 Uldecona, on December 6, 2016. AFP / JOSE JORDAN
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The sun sets in eastern Spain, and dozens of ancient olive trees cast long shadows on the ground.Botanists say a circumference of 10 meters indicates a tree is over a thousand years old, which means this specimen was around when the area was still under Muslim rule.Joan Porta, another farmer, says that just a few years back, olive trees were largely ignored in fields also full of almond and other fruit trees, vines or wheat.Brought to Spain by the Greeks and the Romans, olive trees now cover 2.5 million hectares of land.Not so, argues Roamhy Machoir-Heras, who organized a big ancient olive tree auction in 2011 where Magrez bought his specimens.Of 44 specimens, some were sold for more than 60,000 euros (approximately $63,100).In 2006, the Valencia region banned the practice of tearing out trees with a girth of more than six meters.
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