Ours is a small farm, we have 11 hectares land, about 27 acres. This year we have taken advantage of the last sunny days of the season to harvest olives from our 250 trees. We like to harvest early, between the end of October and the beginning of November, when olives are just turning from green to purple. At this stage olives are rich of oil and aromatic compounds.
The oil will be fruity and peppery with a slightly bitter aftertaste.
Umbrian oil at its best.
Potentially we could produce some 3500 kg/7700 pounds olives. However, most of our olive trees are very young so we presently make only a fraction of that. We pick olives by hand, using small rakes and nets.
We try to pick fast as olives should not be stored too long before processing. However, it takes at least an hour to harvest a tree like that one in this picture below. All for 2-3 bottles oil per mature tree, yeld is 15%.
As our fields are on a fairly steep hill, with all the climbing up and down and carting stuff back to the house at the end of the harvest we are dead tired. Luckily this year we had an energetic helper.
Just like us, she can’t wait to get to the mill and see the results of our efforts.