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A very few words will suffice for the water that drops from the leaves of trees. In all those which are protected by a foliage so dense that the rain will not pass through, the drops are of a noxious nature.1 In our enquiries, therefore, into this subject it will be of the greatest consequence what will be the nature developed by each tree in the soil in which we are intending to plant it. Declivities, taken by themselves, require smaller2 intervals between the trees, and in localities that are exposed to the wind it is beneficial to plant them closer together. However, it is the olive that requires the largest intervals to be left, and on this point it is the opinion of Cato,3 with reference to Italy, that the very smallest interval ought to be twenty-five feet, and the largest thirty: this, however, varies according to the nature of the site. The olive is the largest4 of all the trees in Bætica: and in Africa —if, indeed, we may believe the authors who say so—there are many olive-trees that are known by the name of milliariæ,5 being so called from the weight of oil that they produce each year. Hence it is that Mago has prescribed an interval between these trees of no less than seventy-five feet every way, or of forty-five at the very lowest, when the soil happens to be meagre, hard, and exposed to the winds. There is no doubt, however, that Bætica reaps the most prolific harvests from between her olives.

It will be generally agreed that it is a most disgraceful piece of ignorance to lop away the branches more than is absolutely necessary in trees of vigorous growth, and so precipitate old age; as also, on the other hand, what is generally tantamount to an avowal of unskilfulness on the part of those who have planted them, to have to cut them down altogether. Nothing can reflect greater disgrace upon agriculturists than to have to undo what they have done, and it is therefore much the best to commit an error in leaving a superfluity of room.

1 This is quite a fallacy. Even in the much more probable cases of the upas and mangineel, it is not the fact.

2 Theophrastus, De Causis, B. iii. c. 8, says, that trees that grow on declivities have shorter branches than those of the same kind growing on plains.

3 De Re Rust. c. 16.

4 This assertion is doubtful; at the present day, in Andalusia, the palm, the poplar, and many other trees are much larger than the olive.

5 "Thousand pounders." This, as Fée remarks, is clearly an exaggeration.

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