Anne's Blog

Our Olive Harvest, Alleluia!

Date: November 5, 2015 - categories: , , - Leave your thoughts

We just harvested our olives. Alleluia, alleluia!

Stripping the olives off the branches and into the bucket is the traditional way to pick…

Stripping the olives off the branches and into the bucket is the traditional way to pick…

I remember my first time picking - 1976 - using a handmade willow basket made by a farmer friend.

I remember my first time picking – 1976 – using a handmade willow basket made by a farmer friend.

Pino picked a few trees in the traditional way….

Pino picked a few trees in the traditional way….

…..but then had good times with his new “toy,” a mechanized thresher

…..but then had good times with his new “toy,” a mechanized thresher

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Last year, for the first time in our forty years on the land in Umbria, we skipped olive-picking in November: la mosca olearia devastated olive crops due to a mild winter (absence of freezing temperatures which the olive trees need) intense rains in June and July, and an increasingly tropicale climate here in Italy. As of October, 2014, the Italian media was predicting a 30- 40% olive oil decrease but some areas lost 50% or more of their production.

A cold winter, abundant spring rains and hot summer proved a winning trio for the 2015 harvest: our olives are picked and time now to take them to the mill for pressing.

All picked and ready for the mill - and pressing into olio d’oliva

All picked and ready for the mill – and pressing into olio d’oliva

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Thanks, Zack, Costantino and little Isabella, for your help on the picking.

Mille grazie, Zack, Costantino and Isabella for your olive-harves help

Mille grazie, Zack, Costantino and Isabella for your olive-harves help

zacks-putting-in-box

little-alices-working

pino-and-zack

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Jenny and Liza, glad you were here for the final check on the pruned branches, under the trees…..and spreading out the net under the last tree. Your “installation,” as you aptly called it. An olive harvest gran finale.

Jen and Liza, thanks for your help..and your bellissimo “installation”!

Jen and Liza, thanks for your help..and your bellissimo “installation”!

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…and glad you both were here when Pino brought home our olio nuovo from the olive mill. Buonissimo, no?

At the mill, here comes our olive oil!

At the mill, here comes our olive oil!

Pino’s first taste of our olio nuovo, just back from the olive mill

Pino’s first taste of our olio nuovo, just back from the olive mill

Olio nuovo - just pressed!

Olio nuovo – just pressed!

“Buonissimo!”  Pino affirms

Buonissimo!” Pino affirms

Jenny and Liza, glad you were both here for the first taste!

Jenny and Liza, glad you were both here for the first taste!

Read about – and see! – a past olive harvest
Click here to read about olive oil celebrations in Umbria
Click here to read about the Mediterranean diet
Read about Spello’s celebration of olive oil
Read more on olive oil, “Umbria’s gold”
Read about a risky harvest
Read more about good cooking and good eating together

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