3,000-Year-Old Olive Tree on the Greek Island of Crete Still Produces Olives Today

Image by Eric Nagle, via Wiki­me­dia Com­mons

On the island of Crete, in the vil­lage of Vou­ves, stands an olive tree esti­mat­ed to be 3,000 years old. Hearty and resilient, “the Olive Tree of Vou­ves” still bears fruit today. Because, yes, olives are appar­ent­ly con­sid­ered a fruit.

Archae­ol­o­gist Ticia Verveer post­ed a pic­ture of the tree on Twit­ter and not­ed: It “stood here when Rome burned in AD64, and Pom­peii was buried under a thick car­pet of vol­canic ash in AD79.” That all hap­pened dur­ing the tree’s infan­cy alone.

An esti­mat­ed 20,000 peo­ple now vis­it the tree each year. If you can’t swing a trip to Crete, you can take a clos­er look with the video below, right around the three minute mark.

Across the Mediter­ranean, you can still find six oth­er olive trees believed to be 2,000–3,000 years old–some of our last liv­ing ties to an ancient world. And beau­ti­ful ones at that.

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Relat­ed Con­tent:

This 392-Year-Old Bon­sai Tree Sur­vived the Hiroshi­ma Atom­ic Blast & Still Flour­ish­es Today: The Pow­er of Resilience

Daisu­gi, the 600-Year-Old Japan­ese Tech­nique of Grow­ing Trees Out of Oth­er Trees, Cre­at­ing Per­fect­ly Straight Lum­ber

Vis­it Monte Tes­tac­cio, the Ancient Roman Hill Made of 50 Mil­lion Crushed Olive Oil Jugs


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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.