First of all, we would like to thank you again for your trust and support in our project, we are taking care of your tree the best we know.
We would like to inform you that during this campaign the harvest of our 400 centenary olive trees took us 10 days.
During the harvest of the olives, our day in the field is usually from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Everyday we transport the olive that we collect to the mill to get the best juice possible in the afternoon. We harvest the olives using “electric combs”, as it is the method that we consider least harmful to both the tree and the quality of the olives. The olives from each tree are collected in a 12 meters blanket that we move from one tree to the other.
Once the oil has been produced at the mill, we select its quality based on the fruity aromas, and then we pack the special oil.
Setting up the orders to each CrowdFarmer has been very gratifying for us, since we felt that each box belongs to you among other people involved in our project. Therefore, it helps us support the familiar agriculture model that preserves the environment and supports rural areas.
Once the olive harvest was completed (first week of November), this year we decided to prune the olive trees before winter (they are normally pruned after the end of winter to avoid the risk of frost on the cuts).
On our farm, we perform annual gentle pruning. The aim is having a centenary olive trunk from which two or three branches start, which will be the ones that produce fruits.
We prune the trees in order to renew those branches and not to have a too thick tree top so that the air and the sun can enter the tree (the production of oil inside the olives requires many hours of sun).
After the pruning, the thickest branches are usually used for firewood. On the other hand, the smallest branches are placed along the olive grove in order to crush them so that we incorporate them back into the ground. In this way a mulch is gradually created.
This year we have used some of the bigger branches to make signs where we have written the name of each CrowdFarmer and that we will hang on the trees to identify them.
Since the month of March we fertilize the land. Cow, horse and sheep fertilizer is used. We previously analyzed it in order to control the amount of nutrients.
As we already mentioned, cover vegetation is maintained so that we control erosion, improve soil structure and thereby promote the presence of different invertebrates, bacteria and fungi that are beneficial for soil balance and therefore the agroecosystem.
At the end of April, we mow this grass to avoid competition for water and nutrients between them and the trees, as water is a limited resource in our climatic region, due to the low rainfall. In addition, each of the different species of grass that grow in the olive grove will give to the ground different types of nutrients after being cut and incorporated back into the soil.
As you already know, the olive oil is made from cornicabra olives, which are native to this area, harvested early and cold-pressed below 20°C to ensure the very best quality of oil and preserve the properties that are beneficial to our health.
The oil is reminiscent of freshly cut grass, tomatoes and green banana peels. When you taste it, you’ll probably feel a tickling on the back of your tongue (that’s the bitterness) and a few seconds later, the spiciness in your throat. These aromas, bitter and spicy, come from the high levels of polyphenols and antioxidants that are characteristic of our cornicabra variety of olive and the way we make the oil, which strives to maintain them.
Remember to use this oil raw, to finish off cooked dishes and on salads or toast. It pairs very well with green leafy and tomato salads, adding a lot of flavor, and we encourage you to try it with a nice bread and honey for breakfast.
We are very happy that you are part of our project, since it seems to us a very direct way to get to know us. And remember that we will be waiting for your visit to your olive tree.
Thanks again and see you soon!
Guillermo y Laura