There is constant activity in the grove during the year. Let’s take you through the seasons starting with the first signs of next season’s oil….
OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER
Buds begin to form in this period and the differentiation between vegetative shoots and fruiting shoots becomes apparent. Flowers open and give the first indication of next year’s crop. The fresh, unpolluted breeze wafts through the grove and completes the process of pollination and the fruit begins to set.
DECEMBER TO MARCH
During this period the fruit swells, the stone hardens and the oil accumulates in the olive fruit.
The olive trees are irrigated during summer from dams that fill in winter each year from fresh, clean water flowing from streams in the nearby jarrah and marri eucalypt forest.
MAY AND JUNE
The fruit, which is now a range of colours from green to pink to purple is constantly monitored to determine the optimal time for harvesting. The olives are harvested using a combination of hand held pneumatic rakes and self propelled tree shakers. In both cases the olives are collected in an umbrella that folds around the trunk of the trees. The olives are carefully transferred to special aerated bins for transport to the oil extraction plant for immediate processing.
Immediate processing is critical to the production of a premium product of optimal flavour and character. Any delays and the olives begin to deteriorate, increasing the free fatty acids in the final product and affecting the fresh flavour.
“Third Pillar” Premium Australian Olive Oil is extracted by hygienic and modern continuous processing technology. The proximity of our groves to processing facilities means that the fruit can be processed within hours picking enhancing the special characteristic flavours of the region, while maximizing the natural anti-oxidants and vitamins which make such oil unique among foods.
5 shaker at tree 6 emptying shaker 7 bins on trailer
JULY AND AUGUST
The new oil is stored in controlled conditions until it has settled and is ready for bottling and release to the market.
September is pruning time. Olives are one of the most difficult of all the fruit trees to prune but with care and experience pruning can increase fruit production, improve oil quality, maintain tree health and avoid disease. A recently pruned grove is a joy to behold.