Agriculture in Douma
Douma was and still is a fertile land in which solid, hard-working hands have been deeply rooted for ages, making this land blossom with various products.
Douma offers various agricultural products but unfortunately not as much as it used to, due to the high cost of agriculture and the emigration of Douma's inhabitants to the cities.
Douma, like many other Lebanese villages, is witnessing today an agricultural crisis resulting from the emigration of its inhabitants to urban areas and increasing agricultural production cost.
Douma has various fruit trees, which are relatively a recent plantations going back to the sixties and mainly consist of: cherry, peach, plum, and quince. These trees are mostly found in the middle of the village. We can also find vegetables, legumes, and cereals but in few quantities and mainly for individual household consumption.
The main agricultural products of Douma have mainly been grapes, apples, and olives.
The apple plantations started in Douma in the forties. People have resorted to this kind of plantation after the industrial revolution led to the collapse of the natural silk factories and disappearance of the last silkworm. The first person to bring this agriculture to Douma was the late Dr. Rachid Maatouk who planted the first apple garden in Figure. This agriculture is found in the middle of the hills of Douma producing the best quality fruit. The workers' percentage in this sector reached 75% in the sixties and seventies. The amount of apple product was estimated at about thirty thousand boxes i.e. what corresponds to 45% of the gross revenue. However, today the planted areas decreased and became limited to Figure where the soil is appropriate, the production cost is lower and there is a better immunity against diseases. The current production is estimated to be approximately 20 thousand boxes, knowing that this amount is produced by fifty owners. This is equal to the 15% of the gross income and only 15% of the beneficiaries are the village's inhabitants. The most important apples planted are Golden, Starken, Red Delicious, Double Red, Starken Crimson.
Olive plantations in Douma go back about 1500 years ago if not more. Olive trees in Douma have an almost titanic resistance. A vital force that renders them nearly immortal. Despite harsh winters and burning summers, despite truncations, they heal and inspire the Doumanian spirit. Olive trees are planted in the northwestern part of the village. The majority of the olive trees are Ayrouni and Souri olive trees. The area of olive plantations exceeds 6 square kilometers. It is also worth noting that Douma's olive oil is one of the best quality oil's in the region. The olive oil output in Douma in a productive season is estimated to be about 6000 tankis (20 liter tanks) according to recent statistics in 2001. The climate in Douma is appropriate for olive plantation since olive trees withstand the coldness of hard winters to a temperature of 15 F (-9 C). The olive trees are also capable of withstanding five to six months of drought provided the minimum average of rainfall ranges between 8 and 10 inches in winters.
This agriculture decreased drastically after the vineyard was neglected because of the agricultural difficulties, the production's high expenses and the decline of the raisin, carob bean juice and the "Arak" industry's decline. Today this agriculture is limited to the grapevines most of which are planted in the middle of the village, next to the houses or in other scattered places inFighre (the mountain overlooking Douma). The most important kinds of vineyards are the following: Mirwah, Kossayf, GeydelHamam,Miksassi and Tfayfihi.