29.04.2011 25.Nisan, 5771 Tag 10 des Omer
Trade in ancient olive trees is a big business, often across the Green Line. Arab farmers are tempted by the big cash that wealthy Israelis will pay for such a status symbol, and there's little the law can do about it.
Anyone who visits the home of Moshe and Tova Gindi in Savyon will encounter an avenue of ancient olive trees leading up to the family manse. Another four trees, more splendid, more ancient, stand in the center of the yard. These trees did not grow up there. Indeed for decades and even centuries, they sent their roots into soil far from the land of this upscale Tel Aviv suburb. One day they were uprooted, transported to a big nursery, loaded onto a flatbed trailer, and driven to central Israel to decorate the entrance to the home of an upper-crust family.
>An investigation by Haaretz has found that the phenomenon of uprooting olive trees and turning them into pet plants for the rich has been going on for several years now without causing much of a ripple, and feeds a market worth tens of millions of shekels….