Preparing the Soil for Olives
You’ve heard of EVOO, extra virgin olive oil? Well, get ready for CVOO – Capay Valley Olive Oil!
It all started a little over a year ago after a conversation with a neighbor. That’s when I learned that olive trees really like the Capay Valley climate. Knowing our recent experience with English lavender, you can imagine this was very welcome news.
Our first task: Find a consultant who could help us determine the right varieties for our soil. (Done.) Next: Taste LOTS of olive oils and choose the flavor profile that would best represent us. (Yum! Also done.)
Today, I am very happy to report that, after fourteen months of tastings and research, we have Aglandau, Boutellian, Picholine, Picual, and Coratina olive trees growing on our Farm.
Between now and 2025, when the olives will be ready for pressing, there’s a lot to do. Not to go too far into the “weeds”, as they say, we must learn about soil nutrients, weed and pest control, irrigation specific to olive trees, and pruning.
Just getting the soil ready for the trees was huge educational experience! Lots of experts, lots of equipment. First, we had to "rip" the soil down 4+ feet to aerated it and help it absorb water well. Next, we smoothed the contours of the land, so water wouldn't pool into a specific area. Our final step: spread gypsum to help break up the compact soil and provide an environment that sustains root growth.
Next week, I'll post photos of the crew that helped plan and handle the planting of the 2500 trees. They were the best!
It’s an exciting time for this FarmHer! I’ll be posting updates as they occur, dreaming of the day when we are able to offer our friends CVOO.
As you make plans for your new year, I hope you take a little time to dream. As you can see, you never quite know where it will take you!
Hope to see you this Spring at the Farm.