We had heard stories last year from Wiltrud about the amazing olive tree with huge olives that she found. And the story got bigger with the telling. But this year, at an undisclosed location, we found the legendary tree with the 4 cm. olives. These are untouched photos, attesting to the size of these beauties. It took four us us just to pick one up. OK, not that big, but still... We'll be packing these babies in rock salt and eating them on the first day of picking next year.
Meanwhile the picking is going great, with a week to go. Then we'll be pruning, cutting up brush, andspreading compost.
We are into the home stretch now, with just a couple weeks to go until we finish picking for the year. Of course picking is just the end product of tons of other work and pleasures, the next of which is pruning. Olive trees need pruning, sometimes quite severely to keep them healthy. But more on that some other time.
This year's picking crew has been great. First Omer and Valentina showed up at the end of October, then Friedrich in early November, and finally Ruth and Jan made their yearly return to gezer and the olives about 10 days ago. It's quite an international group-each of us was born in a different country: Norway, England, Germany, Israel, Italy and the US. And of course kibbutz folk show up sometimes too, especially Melissa as well as Varda, Roxanne, and a few other people.
The weather has been great, with about 5 days of rain which kept us away from picking but has refreshed everything and turned the brown bare earth into a green crewcut. It has been nice and cool, which makes the work a lot easier.
I'm not going to brag about this year's oil, but we are already enjoying it with our daily outdoor breakfast in the orchard. There are some photos of this year's harvest in the photos section. Enjoy. As always, love to read your comments. D
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I'm Dani Livney, a member of Kibbutz Gezer, and the manager of the Gezer olives. I love it! I also work as a lawyer, focusing on environmental projects and promoting environmental empowerment and education.