It’s Palm Sunday tomorrow and the flower stalls on La Rambla in Palma are awash with the traditional white palms of Ramos.
Antonio Navarra was born in Manacor and is the 6th generation to follow in the white palm footsteps of his family, after his parents Felipe Navarro and Isabel Planiol.
Every year the family business, Viveros La Palmera in Elche delivers white palms to 250 cities and towns all over Spain, including Mallorca, in the run up to Palm Sunday.
"I go to Seville, Barcelona and Valencia, etc and also to a small town in León which only needs 20 palms, but they’ve been with us for many years,” says Antonio.
The white palms of Elche date back to the 15th century and have been used in Easter parades all over Spain for many, many years.
They come in all shapes and sizes, either plaited or fashioned into broaches and tie-pins and are a symbol of peace and eternal life.
On the eve of Palm Sunday, La Rambla in Palma is usually packed with people who revel in the Easter tradition of buying white palms, but florists in the capital say there’s been a significant drop in demand since the coronavirus pandemic took hold.
"I used to arrive in Mallorca with a van full of palms and this week the van was only half full and I doubt they will all be sold,” they said.
Some worshippers take their white palm to church to be blessed then hang them in their homes alongside other religious ornaments and crosses.
The Bishop of Mallorca, Sebastià Taltavull received his white palm for Easter on Friday.
"This time it's a smooth palm, more symbolic and less elaborate than in previous years,” he says.
Palm Sunday, or Passion Sunday is the first day of Holy Week and celebrates Jesus Christ’s triumphal entry to Jerusalem. When the locals heard he was on his way they laid palm branches and cloaks on the road to welcome him.