One of the first plants that humans cultivated was the hazel bush, which produces hazelnuts as its fruit. According to research, hazelnuts were first gathered in what is now Scotland as early as 9,000 years ago. The prevalence of the plant in countless folktales is a reflection of the extraordinarily long knowledge of the plant by Europeans. Due of the hazel bush’s frequent associations with the location of lovers’ covert encounters, the hazelnut evolved into a symbol of fertility and love and served as the inspiration for numerous proverbs and sayings. For instance, it is believed in France that the “year of hazelnuts” is filled with childbirth and that giving someone a gift of hazelnuts for Christmas symbolizes a declaration of love.