THE JEZREEL VALLEY
Emek Yizreel, the largest valley in the country, running almost from the Mediterranean to the Jordan Valley and dividing the Carmel and the Northern Shomron ranges from the Mountains of Galilee. It is largely composed of alluvial sedimentation deposits and heavy fertile black clay soil. The climate is relatively hot, the average annual temperature being 19.7 C. There are 500 mm. of rains and a relative humidity of 61%. Prior to Jewish settlement the Emek was neglected, partly covered with swamps and marshes and very sparsely populated. It is now the most important agricultural area in the country, engaging in mixed farming with a preference for milk production, raising fodder, poultry and citrus, and also having extensive stretches of grain. Afula is its natural centre and crossroads. On the northern side of the Emek the dome-shaped form of Mount Tabor is particularly striking (see picture).