Forest Walk «The trees of friendship» 2008-09 Let the show run on its own.
` <ul><li>The Carob Tree </li></ul><ul><li>( teratsia in the Cypriot dialect from the Greek kerátiοn (κεράτιον), “fruit of the carob” (from keras [κέρας] "horn" ) </li></ul><ul><li>Botanical Name : Ceratonia siliqua </li></ul><ul><li>Family : Leguminosae </li></ul><ul><li>Genus : Ceratonia </li></ul><ul><li>Common Names : Carob, St John's Bread, Locust, Locust Bean, Black Gold </li></ul>
<ul><li>The Carob Tree is a member of the Pea Family (Leguminosae or Fabaceae). A few of its many family members are sweet peas, peanuts, soy beans and garden peas. </li></ul>
<ul><li>The carob grows slowly during the first year (50 mg/liter monthly, or 25 mg/liter semi-monthly) for 5 months. </li></ul><ul><li>It is necessary to cut back the taproot 6 months before transferring to the field if the plant is not grown by the tube/post-hole method. </li></ul><ul><li>Large trees cannot be successfully transplanted . </li></ul><ul><li>It grows to a height of about 50 to 60 feet (15 to 17 metres) </li></ul>
<ul><li>The Carob Tree begins to produce fruit when it is 6 to 15 years old. It can live and produce fruit until it is 100 years old. </li></ul>
<ul><li>The carob tree has been grown since antiquity in most countries of the Mediterranean basin, usually in mild and dry places with poor soils . Its value was recognized by the ancient Greeks, who brought it from its native Middle East to Greece and Italy and by the Arabs, who disseminated it along the North African coast and north into Spain and Portugal. </li></ul>
<ul><li>It was spread in recent times to other Mediterranean-like regions such as California, Arizona, Mexico, Chile and Argentina by Spanis h , to parts of Australia by Mediterranean emigrants and to South Africa and India by the English. </li></ul>
<ul><li>The carob tree is an important component of the Mediterranean vegetation and its cultivation in marginal and prevailing calcareous soils of the Mediterranean region is important environmentally and economically . </li></ul>
<ul><li>Traditionally, grafted carob trees have been interplanted with olives, grapes, almonds and barley in low-intensity farming systems in most producing countries . </li></ul>
<ul><li>Carob flowers - The carob flowers are produced from older stems </li></ul><ul><li>Flowers are green-tinted red </li></ul>
<ul><li>The pods must be harvested before winter rains. They are shaken down by means of a long pole with a terminal hook to grasp the branches. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Mature carob bean is from 10 to 20 centimeters long. It is a dark brown colour when dry. The flesh of the bean is eaten by most farm animals. </li></ul>
Fig. 2. Important parts of the carob pod (A), section of pod (B) and seed (C).
<ul><li>As a food source, carob pods could be stored and transported long distances . In most of the Mediterranean region wild and naturalized carobs are distributed in more or less the same geographic and climatic belt as the cultivated. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Forms of spontaneous carobs are particularly common at low altitudes along the Spanish Mediterranean coast, southwest Spain, southern Portugal, the Balearic Islands, southeast France, the shores of southern Italy including Sicily, the Adriatic coast of Croatia , the Aegean region and Crete in Greece and Turkey, along the northern and southern ranges of the isle of Cyprus, in the islands of Malta, in the maritime belt of Lebanon and Israel, the north and south of Morocco and the coastline in Tunisia. </li></ul>