Harvesting the olives

 

Last year there were no olives on the trees in El Parral.  We were still in a period of drought, added to which problem the trees had been left unattended for fifteen years and they were in a poor condition.  I am pleased to say that the olive crop this year is very good.  They are only small trees, so I am not harvesting on the scale of the farms around me.  I’ll probably have two full buckets by the end of the harvesting tomorrow.

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Of course, now I have drawn attention to the olives, everybody wants to pick them!  And being up a ladder while Morris is eating my trousers can be quite hazardous…

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4 thoughts on “Harvesting the olives

  1. Morris’ idea of a perfect day: Blue buckets, filled with olives and trousers constantly going up and down ladders… Beautiful photo of Aitana stretching up to try to reach the olives!

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  2. A good small harvest, though of course small is infinitely better than non-existent — and it bodes very well for your local bucket merchant in years to come as your trees carry on in their way towards recovery and the land slowly purges itself of the poisons in the soil ; though olive trees of course grow only very slowly, this could be an early sign that your other fruit trees might be generous too next season.

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  3. Yeah. Sosa caustica, caustic soda [1]… Chemical name: sodium hydroxide. Chemical formula: NaOH. Reacts with the bitter oils in raw olives starting a process called saponification, the same process as used to make soap…

    NaOH + vegetable oil —> soap

    Important not to leave the olives in contact with the NaOH solution too long, pues they’ll disintegrate as the soapy process takes hold. Do not to confuse olives with Belgian chocolates, spam or cobardes what leave their followers wondering what they’ve done wrong. OTOH, maybe catalan separatistas would make good soap if allowed to react slowly with caustic soda. In a drain somewhere in Bruges.

    [1] Catalan you ask? Well, I’m going for ‘sos caustic’. If it’s not that, then ‘cadbury’s milk tray’ is another possibility. Of course, confirmation for either will have to wait until the boys are called to Plaza Castilla… Continuará…

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