A Cretan olive tree makes an impression on NASA scientists

HuffingtonPost.gr — .An ancient olive tree in Chania impressed the scientists at NASA who published its picture at Earth Science Picture of the Day (EPOD).

“This handsome but deeply gnarled olive tree may be the oldest such tree in the world. It still produces olives to this day. The Olive Tree of Vouves is found in the village of Ano Vouves on the island of Crete, Greece. Though an exact age of the tree cannot be determined, tree ring analysis demonstrates that it’s at least 2,000 years old. However, tree rings aren’t always reliable in dating old olive trees. Additionally, because most of its heartwood has been lost,radioisotopes can’t be used to give a more precise age. Note that the stone-work style in two cemeteries nearby is thought to date back to the Geometric Period — approximately 3,000 years ago.

The trunk of this magnificent specimen has a circumference of 41 ft (12.5 m). It was declared a protected natural monument of Greece. Branches from this ancient olive were used to weave victors’ wreaths for the winners of both the 2004 Athens Olympics and the 2008 Beijing Olympics”.

Summary Author: Kotsaftis Xristos

The olive tree of Vouves is famous for being the oldest known olive tree on Earth.

Scientists from the University of Crete have estimated its age at between  2000 and 4,000 years old.

The tree was declared a natural monument in 1997.

The village Ano Vouves, near Kolymbari, is 30 kilometers west of Chania