In our olive grove's we planted about 85 olive trees. They are all are between 15 and 200 hundred years old. The trees were before tourism the only wealth and livelyhood, in addition to fishing and animal rarering, there was no other income sources of meaning.
South of Limone, Gargnano and Gardone Riviera many families also grow chestnuts up in the 5-600 m altitude, with chestnuts as a base for exchange for other goods.
The small and unsaleable chestnuts were used by the families, they were buried in pits and used during the winter for baking.
The Olive tree cycle begins in early spring, where we have to cut the new shoots that are shooting on the old branches. Our trees have been cut short, so it's accessible from a fairly reasonable height, but in the area, it is customary to let the trees grow to unprecedented heights, so cutting and harvesting takes place in 10-12 feet. It helps to prevent some serious accidents, so we decided to keep our trees shorter. When the trees are trimmed well, they are ready to bloom. It happens in the middle of April, with a wealth of small lace at the end of each twig.
During the entire summer, you can then enjoy the shade under the trees, which, incidentally, are evergreen. The fruit develops very slowly, but latest in September one can begin to glimpse the future profits.
Harvesting usually starts in October. At Lake Garda the olive harvest is the exact methodhow it was in the past centuries. They are handpicked! It all happens on long ladders, which consists of a large center pole with steps sticking out of both sides and a wedge at the bottom to prevent the ladder to roll around. In the past, ladder made of a long wooden stems, now it is mainly of aluminium. It is still very difficult to maneuver the ladder and out of tree, it must be completely vertical otherwise you loos the balance. It requires some practice, I can tell you! Well up in the top tie is now the ladder to the tree for safety's sake. Now it all starts with the special tool that resembles a hot dog tongs with two bands in the middle. The claims are now on the branch to be cleaned, and a snap pliers run down over the branches and leaves and fruits just fall off. They gather in large nets, which are placed under the tree. When you are finished picking, move the ladder to the next tree, and olives from the previous tree are gathered together and cleaned of leaves and twigs. The whole family is involved, and the harvest usually lasts a few weeks.
Once all the fruits are harvested, they are filled in boxes and bags and taken to the Olive Mill´s pressing room. The percentage of oil is between 12 and 24 percent by weight, depending on when the olives are harvsted and how much rainfall there has been before the Limone oil is highly recommended and of great value, due to it´snewowned quality. Prices vary between16,-&25,- EUR / Ltr. It ispractically acid-free and rich in vitamins and unsaturated fats. It is the cold pressed olive, we're doing, which means that the fruit is squeezed between two stone rollers, so the olive stones are crushed. No heating takes place during pressing to retain all the nutritional values.
Since we have a large production of olive oil, we also sell it to our private clients, so if you are interested come by while stocks last.
Price 18,- EUR / Liter.