“Climate-change farmer” plants England’s first olive grove
Britain’s first olive grove has been planted in Devon in southwestern England — made possible by global warming. Traditionally an iconic crop of Mediterranean regions, the olive may soon be able to flourish in more northerly climes, some specialists believe, thanks to rising temperatures. Olive entrepreneur Mark Diacono hopes that his “climate-change farm” will produce Britain’s first homegrown olive oil in five to seven years. Diacono, who plans to grow his crops organically, has also planted warm-weather-loving apricots and almonds. The only question, he says, is “have I done this 10 years too early or 20 years too early? But I don’t think so.” Emilio Ciacci, who provided Diacono with trees from Tuscany, doesn’t think so either. Ciacci has cofounded a business that aims to promote olive groves across southern England.