Although it did not receive status as one of the seven agricultural species described in the Torah, the almond tree still holds vaunted status for its beauty and its blossoms herald the return of spring in the land of Israel.

Almond trees grow widely across Israel, from the Center to the North, both in large commercial groves and scattered throughout the country’s many hills and valleys.

Almost magically, the first blossoms appear each year in Israel at Tu Bishvat, the fifteenth of the Hebrew month of Shvat which marks the New Year for trees and which is celebrated this year on January 25-26. The abundance of trees in Israel offers photographers opportunity to capture a wide range of the tree’s personality and characteristics throughout the seasons. Here are a few of my favorite shots taken during the past few years.

Become a better photographer. Digital Photography Made Simple, an 8-week intensive course covering basic technical skills and visual awareness training, begins this month with instructor Yehoshua Halevi. Classes forming in both Jerusalem and Gush Etzion. For complete details, send an email to: goldenlightimages@gmail.com

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