Curacao's sizzling sun and arid climate
Shortly after the conquest of the island in 1499, the Spaniards planned for, amongst others, an agricultural development of Curacao. One of the plants they carried with care on their long sea voyages from Spain was the so-called “Valencia” orange. Historical records show that someone named Pérez Maestre brought the first seeds from Hispaniola in 1527. When the Dutch arrived they found small groves in some areas of the island. The sizzling sun and arid climate were too much for the colorful sweet oranges though, and this once juicy fruit then turned into a kind of bitter, almost inedible product.
The project was forgotten and the "misfits" of the once proud "Valencia" oranges grew wild and abandoned. Not even our infamous goats would touch them. But this was a blessing in disguise because decades later (the exact date is lost in history), planters discovered that the peels of this orange, thoroughly dried by the sun, contained etheric oils with an extraordinary pleasing fragrance. In order to not let crops go to waste they started developing their own recipe to share with friends and family.