The olive harvest began a couple weeks early this year, in mid October, due to a hot, dry summer that caused the olives to ripen early. We harvested 1500 kilos this year, about 1/3 of our really successful 2015 harvest, but following a year of no olives we were thankful.  An unexpected surprise was a higher yield than in 2015, averaging about 16% (it was 12% in 2015).  The olives were milled into a delicious, fruity and nutty extra-virgin oil with a low acidity level of 0.02%.  The olive trees, some of which are over 400 years old, are nestled among almond, walnut, cherry, fig, pear, persimmon and pomegranate trees, on land that has been farmed solely organically for the last 17 years.

We picked 64 trees of the approximately 120 olive trees on our 5 acres.  Each tree has it’s own unique character, wisdom, and color pallette and I (obsessively) sketched each one, documenting the process through a daily sketch diary.

We were a core team of three with occasional help from friends locally and visitors from Sicily and Slovenia. I can’t wait to do it all again next year!