Apart from the vineyards our property is also composed of terraces for the cultivation of olive trees which give a very high quality oil.
In fact the name Volastra comes from the Latin “Vicus Oleaster”, that literally means the place of the olive trees. This makes you understand how this type of activity is considered “historical” for our village.
The cultivation of the olive trees certainly requires less effort compared with the cultivation of the vines even though, due to the landscape morphology , every single agricultural activity means huge effort.
During the winter we proceed with plowing and fertilizing the soil which on a later stage we maintain clear from weeds using brush cutters.The clearing of the field is very important because before the harvest, which normally occurs from late October onwards, we set networks under the trees upon which the olives will fall.
It is very important to note that during its cultivation we do not use any type of chemical herbicides or insecticides, normally used to prevent the spread of the oil fly that placing a small egg inside each olive causes its rotting.
This year to prevent the fly that may seriously endanger the harvest, we used a totally organic gadget called “tap-trap”. It consists of a yellow cap put on a plastic bottle containing a pint of ammonia and one anchovy, tied on a branch.
The content of the bottle has a strong attraction for the fly that once inside is no longer able to come out. As a result the olives will be much healthier.
The olives are harvested with the use of ladders, carefully secured with ropes to reach the upper part of the stem. Once climbed the ladder we proceed with the pruning of the plant with a hacksaw and make the branches fall on the underlying networks by which the olives will be removed by using small rakes.
After the collection we transport the olives in sacks to the mill for the long-awaited final phase: the production of oil.
The yield may vary from 10% to 20% depending on quality, ripeness and season climate.
The quality of our oil is well established and we are so used to its excellent taste that for us it is practically impossible to use other oils to dress our food, especially when raw.
This year we have gone to the mill three times to obtain an average yield of 15%.