My first project this January is to survey all the chestnuts on the Finca. The majority of these were planted in orchards over 100 to 200 years ago. In order to start the process I have decided to name the different parts of the Finca: Navasola East, Navasola Central, and Navasola West. Some might prefer more romantic names rather than similarities to Hounslow on the Piccadilly Line! However, this has worked for me as I have now explored and counted all the major chestnuts of Navasola East.
Let’s meet some of these elderly but prolific producers of chestnuts.
are some of the ancient trees or ancianos in Spanish in the field referred to as la parcela afuera de la cancela. This is the plot of land just outside the main gate. Many of the trees have had branches fall this winter. In the past the trees would have been managed but in the latter part of the 20 th century have been neglected and it is now a task for us to decide how to continue. However, the trees do their best to survive inclement weather and produce new growth.
Each tree has a different shape and quality and sometimes very clear facial features! More of these later………. The trees can be of varying heights but many are squat with more spindly crowns of branches reaching for the sky. In January, without the leaves, the shapes are fascinating, and the trees create a stillness as all is sleeping within, dormant but getting ready for the spring. From May to December the trees work hard and for their age still produce an abundance of chestnuts. The trees work to survive and will produce new growth from what sometimes seems to be a trunk that has rotted away on the inside. More on the chestnuts of Navasola in future posts.