Foix
Mill

The construction known as Foix Mill (formerly Macià mill) is what remains of the old medieval flour mill, which took advantage of the water carried by the Foix river to mill grain. The entire exterior structure of the mill is preserved, as is part of the pool where the water accumulated.

The building, owned by the municipality, is the headquarters of the Foix Mill Historical and Natural Interpretation Centre, Nature Classroom and Botanical Garden, with native species, where educational activities are carried out for school children and the general public on environmental and natural issues.

Bookings

Important information

Information centre opening hours

Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays
from 10 am to 2 pm
Tuesday from 4 pm to 7 pm.

Arranged tours are available with prior booking.

 

Contact

Contact phone number: 93 818 69 28

Presentation

The construction known as Foix Mill (formerly Macià mill) is what remains of the old medieval flour mill, which took advantage of the water carried by the Foix river to mill grain. The entire exterior structure of the mill is preserved, as is part of the pool where the water accumulated.

The building, owned by the municipality, is the headquarters of the Foix Mill Historical and Natural Interpretation Centre, Nature Classroom and Botanical Garden, with native species, where educational activities are carried out for school children and the general public on environmental and natural issues.

The facilities

The Mill has a room for temporary exhibitions located on the ground floor of the building, right at the entrance, where you can observe the original stone that was the ceiling of the millstone room.

The Nature Classroom is on the first floor, where the farmers’ living quarters used to be. It is a multipurpose room with an area dedicated to internal work, meetings and where the Environmental Documentation Centre is hosted, where bibliographic consultations concerning environmental issues can be made.

The Grindstone Room s located on a lower level, where the machinery of the flour mill used to be housed. It has been restored respecting the original architectural elements. The floor is covered by wood and glass, which allows you to see where the grindstones and the ancient wine vats were located. This is a multi-purpose room for various activities such as talks, exhibitions, concerts, and so on.

Outside we find the Botanical Garden which boasts species belonging to different plant communities of the Alt Penedès.

Flour mill

Cereal farming
Cereal farming began in the eastern Mediterranean in the Neolithic. From there it spread to north Africa and Europe. Cereal farming involves knowing the crop cycle of each type of cereal. This crop cycle determines the sowing period, the germination of the ears and harvesting, as well as the agricultural work that must be carried out throughout the year.

Cereals. The staple diet
Since ancient times, cereals have played a fundamental role in the human diet. They currently provide for more than half of the world’s protein needs, whether in the form of flour, bread, pasta or couscous. Fermented beverages and by-products are also obtained from cereals, such as bran, gluten and starch.

From grain to flour The early mills
In order to be consumed, cereals must undergo a process of milling, to turn them into flour. Since ancient times, humans have equipped themselves with a series of mechanical instruments to mill cereals: from the Neolithic cup-shaped mills to the Roman cone frustum mill, passing through the mortars and pinwheels used by the Iberian communities.

The force of water. Grinders and rollers
In the middle ages, a new kind of mill spread which, unlike previous ones, used water as its main driving force: the water mill. The adoption by medieval communities of the water mill meant a considerable rise in flour production, given that their milling capacity was considerably increased.

Botanical garden
Botanical garden
THE FOIX MILL BOTANICAL GARDEN,
A DIDACTIC STROLL THROUGH THE FLORA OF THE PENEDÈS:

The Foix Mill Botanical Garden is a place where, in addition to strolling and enjoying the plants found there, we can learn. Learn about our region and the plant life that inhabits it. This is why here we can find species belonging to different plant communities of the Alt Penedès.
The distribution of the plants in the garden is not an attempt to reproduce the natural vegetation of the region, in which the species live together in communities (the holm-oak wood, pine forests, thickets and riverside woodland), but simply to offer a more or less broad sample of the plant species that make up some of these communities.

LIST OF PLANT SPECIES OF THE BOTANICAL GARDEN:
Catalan name, Spanish name, English name (scientific name)

Aladern fulla estreta, labiernago, narrow-leaved mock privet (Phillyrea angustifolia)
In scrub, maqui communities and thickets.

Aladern, aladierno, sanguino, Mediterranean buckthorn (Rhamnus alaternus)
Scrub, maqui communities, woodlands. It can be found throughout our territory.

Albecoquer, albaricoquero, apricot tree (Prunus armeniaca) *
Origin: China. Orchards, gardens, farmland.
The apricot is eaten fresh and also preserved dry, cut into slices.

Aloc, gatillo casto, sauzgatillo, chaste tree (Vitex agnus-castus)
Inhabits the banks of gullies and run-offs, in the domain of holm-oak woods.
Due to confusion with hagnós which means chaste, the superstition arose that the seed of this plant served to keep chastity and the Latin name of castus was added.

Alzina, encina, holm-oak (Quercus ilex)
Due to the actions of man it has been reduced to small thickets and glades.
Its wood is used in carpentry, for producing charcoal and chemical products. Its bark provides useful tannins for tanning. Its acorns are eaten by wild boar.

Ametller, almendro, almond tree, (Prunus amygdalus) *
Origin: China. Crop fields.
It can be found cultivated throughout the Mediterranean. Almonds are eaten raw or roasted and are the basis for many cakes and pastries, such as almond bread, typical all saints ‘panellets’, and turró nougat. Almond shells can be burned in appropriate stoves, for heating.

Aranyoner, endrino, sloe (Prunus spinosa)
Typical of hedges.

Arboç, madroño, strawberry tree (Arbutus unedo)
In open holm-oak woods. It can be found throughout our territory.
Its fruit is edible but somewhat indigestible. Its leaves are astringent and have been used to alleviate diarrhoea and dysentery.

Arbre d’amor, árbol del amor, Judas tree (Cercis siliquastrum)
Maqui communities, woods, gardens. Widely used as an ornamental tree.

Arç blanc, espino albar, common hawthorn (Crataegus monogina)
On the banks of rivers and streams.
Its flowers are considered an excellent tonic for the heart and circulatory apparatus; they are sedatives and antispasmodics.

Arítjol, zarzaparrilla, sarsaparilla (Smilax aspera)
In holm-oak woods, coastal maqui communities, scrubland and hedges.
It has purifying, diuretic and sudorific properties. Its roots have anti-asthmatic properties. It is often used in sugary drinks and above all in beer.

Boix, boj, boxwood (Buxus sempervirens)
Cool places, dry woodland.
Greatly used in gardening. Its hard, highly uniform wood is used to make turned pieces and small utensils such as spoons and forks.

Botja d’escombres, bocha, mijediega, prostrate Canary clover (Dorycnium pentaphyllum)
Dry, rocky locations, maqui communities, scrubland.

Bruc boal, brezo blanco, urce, tree heather (Erica arborea)
Mediterranean maqui communities and thickets.

Càdec, cada, prickly juniper, cade (Juniperus oxycedrus)
It inhabits holm-oak woodlands and maqui communities.
Its wood is highly esteemed by cabinetmakers. In veterinary surgery, cade oil, obtained by distilling the wood, is used to treat skin infections.

Crespinell, uva de gato, white stonecrop (Sedum album)

Englantina, rosa mosqueta, mosquera, evergreen rose (Rosa sempervirens)
Open woodland.

Esbarzer, zarza, thornless blackberry (Rubus ulmifolius)
Inhabits moist woodland clearings and in hedges.

Esparreguera boscana, esparrago amarguero, wild asparagus (Asparagus acutifolius)
Found in holm-oak woodland with laurustine, in pine forests and in undergrowth.
The shoots, or asparagus, are edible. They have diuretic properties. Other species of asparagus are farmed. The Egyptians were already farming asparagus 6,000 years ago.

Espígol, espliego, lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
On sunny, rocky hillsides, in thickets or light shrubland.
It is an antispasmodic, a diuretic, an antiseptic and an anti-rheumatic and it activates the circulation and it heals wounds. It is used in perfumes and cosmetics as well as an air freshener. A bunch in the wardrobe perfumes all your clothes.

Espinavessa, espina santa, Jerusalem thorn (Paliurus spina-christi)

Estepa blanca, jara blanca, jaguarzo blanco, grey-leaved cistus (Cistus albidus)
Sunny thickets and scrubland. It is good for making poultices.
Its seeds are rich in starch and have been used to obtain flour and mixed with other breadmaking wheat.

Farigola, tomillo, thyme (Thymus vulgaris)
Dry, sunny places. Its leaves and flowering tops are antispasmodics, balsamic, healing and can be used as a condiment. Its essential oil is a stimulant, antispasmodic, expectorant, antiseptic and antiviral. Thyme soup is ideal on cold winter’s nights.
Festuca, festuca, blue fescue (Festuca glauca)

Figuera, higuera, fig tree (Ficus carica)
Rocky places, fields, gardens. It is typical of the Mediterranean and is farmed for its fruit.

Fonoll, hinojo, fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)
Tracks, dry land.
It is an antidote to poisonous herbs and mushrooms. This highly aromatic plant is used to prepare and preserve olives whose flavour, it is believed, is enhanced.

Galzeran, brusco, arrayán, butcher’s broom (Ruscus aculeatus)
It grows in holm-oak woods with laurustine, in shady places.
It is one of the most highly prized plants for decorative winter branches, especially around Christmas.

Garric, coscoll, coscoja, kermes oak (Quercus coccifera)
Dry rocky places, in scrubland and maqui communities.
Tannins are extracted from its bark.

Garrofer, algarrobo, carob tree (Ceratonia siliqua)
Dry, sunny terrain, coastal maqui communities.
Astringent and diuretic properties. It is used as a laxative in pharmaceutical formulae. Carobs were typically fed to horses.

Gatosa, tojo, aliaga morisca, Mediterranean gorse (Ulex parviflorus)
In dry thickets and maqui communities.

Ginesta, retama de color, Spanish broom (Spartium junceum)
Maqui communities, dry rocky areas.
Its stems provide fibre suitable for weaving basic fabrics, rope and twine. Young branches are used to weave baskets.

Heura, hiedra, common ivy (Hedera helix)
In shady woodlands; covering the ground and rocks or climbing trees.
Its fruit is toxic. It is used in gardening and perfumery.

Llentiscle, mata, lentisco, lentisk, mastic (Pistacia lestiscus)
In woods, thickets and maqui communities.
Its resin constitutes the mastic used in medicine and to make varnish. Mastic was formerly used like chewing gum to strengthen the gums and as a breath freshener.

Lleteresa, lechetrezna, tártago mayor, Mediterranean spurge (Euphorbia characias)
In dry, sunny places, in scrubland and thickets.
The plant is toxic. It induces vomiting and has a purging effect.

Lligabosc mediterrani, zapaticos, evergreen honeysuckle (Lonicera implexa)
In holm-oak woodland and in scrubland.
Used as an ornamental plant in gardens. Its flowers are soothing; its berries, which are not edible, are diuretic and emetic.

Marduix, mejorana, marjoram (Origanum majorana)

Marfull, durillo, tino, laurustine (Viburnum tinus)
Woods and scrubland.
Its fruits are purgatives and have been used to combat fluid retention.

Margalló, palmito, European fan palm, Mediterranean dwarf palm (Chamaerops humilis)
Dry, arid places, rocky areas, coastal maqui communities.
It is the only native European palm. Its leaves are used to make brooms and its fibres to make rope, twine and various types of basket. In accordance with the Order of 5 November 1984 issued by the Department of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries of the Catalan Government, it is prohibited to pick this palm.

Mariallüisa, hierba luisa, lemon verbena  (Lippia triphylla) *
Origin: Chile.
It helps with digestion and is an antispasmodic.

Matabou, matabuey, shrubby hare’s-ear (Bupleurum fruticosum)
Scrubland and rocky areas.

Olivella, olivillo, spurge olive (Cneorum tricoccon)
Typical of coastal maqui communities, dry, rocky places.

Olivera, olivo, olive tree (Olea europaea)
Woodlands, cropland.
The tree most commonly associated with the Mediterranean. It has been cultivated in all of the countries of the Mediterranean since ancient times for its olives, to make oil. Its wood is very hard and highly prized.

Orenga, orégano, oregano (Origanum vulgare)
Open woodland, well-drained meadows.
In the form of an infusion, it is a tonic and a digestive. It is used as a herb. It is used to prepare olives.

Pi blanc, pino carrasco, Jerusalem pine (Pinus halepensis)
Dry, rocky places in holm-oak country.
Its wood is commonly used in carpentry. Its kernels are typically eaten by field mice and squirrels.

Pi pinyer, pino piñonero, nut pine (Pinus pinea)
Mediterranean region, especially on the coast and nearby sierras.
Its kernels are edible and highly prized in pastry-making (flatbreads, typical all saints ‘panellets’, etc)

Pollancre, chopo, black poplar (Populus nigra)

Roja, rubia, wild madder (Rubia peregrina)
It inhabits holm-oak woods, scrubland and thickets.
The species Rubia tinctoria, of the same genus, is known for its dying properties. It ceased to be farmed when anilines were discovered.

Roldor, emborrachacabras, redoul (Coriaria myrtifolia)
Typical of hedgerows.

Romaní, romero, rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)
Arid, rocky ground, thickets.
Infused it is a stomachic, an antispasmodic, a tonic and is highly indicated in cases of liver failure; if applied to the skin, it heals, disinfects and is an anti-rheumatic. Its essential oil is an antiseptic, antiparasitic, analgesic and it stimulates the scalp. It is used in perfumes and cosmetics and as an air freshener.

Roser caní, escaramujo, agavanzo, dog rose (Rosa canina)
Waysides, tracks, woods, hedgerows.
Its roots and leaves are astringents, its fruit has anti-diarrheal properties and are rich in vitamin C.

Roure martinenc, roble pubescente, downy oak, pubescent oak (Quercus humilis=Quercus pubescens)
Cool, not too humid places.

Sajolida, ajedrea, winter savory, mountain savory (Satureja montana)

Sàlvia, salvia, (common) sage (Salvia officinalis)

Santolina, espernallac, abrotamo hembra, cotton lavender, lavender-cotton (Santolina chamaecyparissus)
Arid ground, gardens.
Aromatic species, greatly used due to the colour of its leaves.

Sarga, bitter willow, olive willow, hoary willow, rosemary willow, elaeagnus willow (Salix elaeagnos)

Saüc, saúco, elder, elderberry, black elder, European elder, European elderberry, European black elderberry (Sambucus nigra)
Hedgerows and beside flowing water.
It has sudorific, diuretic, healing and anti-inflammatory properties. In Portugal, its berries are used to give colour to port wine.

Savina, sabina negra, Phoenicean juniper (Juniperus phoenicea)
It inhabits more or less open maqui communities and pine forests throughout our region.

Ullastre, acebuche, wild olive (Olea europaea var. sylvestris)
It inhabits coastal maqui communities, sunny sites throughout our region.
It is the wild olive tree. Its fruit is not edible.

Vidiella, muermera, clemátide, fragrant virgin’s bower (Clematis flammula)
In holm-oak woods, maqui communities and scrubland throughout our region.
This herb is toxic; its leaves, applied to the skin, cause blistering and small sores. An ideal plant for observing woody xylem vessels with the naked eye.

Vinca ciliada, vincapervinca mayor, bigleaf periwinkle, large periwinkle, greater periwinkle and blue periwinkle (Vinca major)

Vinya, vid, common grape vine (Vitis vinifera)
– Cabernet
– Chardonnay
– Garnatxa
– Macabeu
– Merlot
– Moscatell
– Parellada
– Ull de llebre
– Xarel·lo

It is one of the basic crops of the Mediterranean. Grape harvesting dates from time immemorial. The purpose is to obtain wine, although in ancient times physicians and pharmacists used the leaves against nasal and uterine haemorrhages, or as astringents. The sap was used to cleanse the eyes and bodily wounds. After making wine, vinegar can also be obtained if we alter the conditions of fermentation.

Xiprer de Leyland, ciprés de Leyland, Leyland cypress (Cupressocyparis leylandii)
Horticultural origin, hybrid (Cupressus macrocarpa x Chamaecyparis nootkaten)
Planted, sometimes, in the form of fences to form an acoustic and visual screen