Olive Farming Information guide

By | September 20, 2018

Olive Farming Detail Study

Hello, friends and farmer, this article is related to the Olive Farming. If you are interested in Olive Farming so please read this full article we have covered all information regarding the Olive Farming. and if you have any question about Olive Farming and any other agriculture in your mind please write in comment box we will help you surely, so now let’s talk about the Olive Farming…

Introduction of Olive Farming

  • Olive farming is indeed very profitable in the mid and long term, provide the climate and the region are suitable for Olive Farming.
  • However, as it happens in nearly all agriculture and livestock commercial activities.
  • The first year is introductory and a farmer shall make a small rational investment in order to test his/her strength and acquire a basic understanding of the market, without expecting a considerable income.
  • During the second, the third and the fourth years, the farmer will acquire enough farming experience and market data in order to decide on extending the investment to a larger scale, selecting another location/ variety, adjusting cultivation methods or divest.
  • Especially when cultivating olive trees, a farmer shall be patient, because olive trees achieve good yields after their 5th or 6th year of life.
  • This means, that if a farmer selects and plants young trees of 2-3 years old, then he/she shall expect good yield about 2-4 years after the establishment of the olive farm.
  • Moreover, as it happens in nearly all fruit trees, you need economies of scale.
  • This means that you cannot make a good income and live solely from growing 30 or 50 olive trees because fixed costs will surely reach earnings.
  • The minimum number of trees providing good income ranges from country to country.
  • However, we can say that a farm of 1 hectare (10.000 square meters) with 300 trees is a good start.
  • The olive tree is a perennial, evergreen tree that can live and produce olives for more than a century.
  • In some rare cases, olive trees have been reported to live and produce sprouts at an age of 1800 years old.
  • The tree reaches a height of 5-20 meters.
  • As it happens with most trees, the height of the tree is affected by the vividness of the subject or of the variety, the soil and climate conditions, and finally, the cultivation methods use.
  • The trunk is cylindrical, smooth on young trees and bumpy in older because lumps of varying size appear as the time goes by.

Grown Areas In India – Olive Farming

  • In India, Bael fruit is found growing along foothills of Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir.

Value Of Olive And also other Parts – Olive Farming

  • The olive tree plays a very important role, because not only does it utilize land that is unsuitable for other crops but also helps to protect the soil from erosion.
  • The main products produced by the olive tree are olive oil and table olives.
  • The pomade of olives is also important for industrial use.
  • Some other by-products that may have economic importance are the leaves, wood, core etc.
  • Finally, olive trees are often grown in pots indoors or outdoors as ornamental.
  • The genus Olea includes 30 different species, which are cultivated in five continents.
  • The most important of these are Olea Europea. L., subspecies euro Mediterranean, Olea Europea. , subspecies cuspidate Vall, Cif, Olea Europea. L., subspecies laperrini Batt, and Traub. 

How Can Olive Farming?

  • Growing olive trees commercially first requires suitable climate conditions and the selection of a field with certain characteristics.
  • In a few words, olive trees prefer well-drained soils like flat or with gentle slope and exposure to direct sunlight.
  • They cannot tolerate temperatures below 7 °C for many days, but a certain amount of cold is necessary for the fruit development.
  • This is the reason why olive trees cannot be grown in tropical climates.
  • The average olive tree starts to produce olives at the age of 4-5 years and they will continue to eternity.
  • There are findings suggesting that in some cases 1800 years old trees still produce sprouts.
  • The olive tree responds greatly to irrigation and fertilization, while pruning is necessary at least every other year.
  • Provide you take care of your olive trees; you will harvest an average production of 22 to 90 kg per every mature healthy tree.
  • Having a good understanding of Alternate Bearing is essential for cultivating commercially olive trees.
  • Olive farms are indeed very profitable in the mid and long term, provided the climate and the region are suitable for growing olive trees.
  • However, as it happens in nearly all agriculture and livestock commercial activities.
  • The first year is introductory and a farmer shall make a small rational investment in order to test his/her strength and acquire.
  • A basic understanding of the market, without expecting a considerable income.
  • During the second, the third and the fourth years, the farmer will acquire enough farming experience and market data in order to decide on extending the investment.
  • To a larger scale, selecting another location/ variety, adjusting cultivation methods or divest.
  • Especially when cultivating olive trees, a farmer shall be patient, because olive trees achieve good yields after their 5th or 6th year of life.
  • This means, that if a farmer selects and plants young trees of 2-3 years old, then he/she shall expect good yield about 2-4 years after the establishment of the olive farm.
  • Moreover, as it happens in nearly all fruit trees, you need economies of scale.
  • This means that you cannot make a good income and live solely from growing 30 or 50 olive trees because fixed costs will surely reach earnings.
  • The minimum number of trees providing good income ranges from country to country.
  • However, we can say that a farm of 1 hectare almost 10.000 square meters with 300 trees is a good start.
  • The propagation of the olive tree by seed and asexually is relatively easy.
  • The propagation by seed is not recommended for commercial use, because the varieties of olives may differ significantly from the variety of the seed.
  • Moreover, the plants-seedlings are characterized by a very long period of juvenility, resulting in a remarkable delay of fruition.
  • The olive tree is asexually propagated by rooted suckers, cuttings, and grafting.
  • Professional olive farmers choose cuttings or grafts in order to achieve product uniformity and quality.
  • In a few words, professional growers benefit from a tree that is a combination of two different plant tissues, the rootstock, and the scion.
  • The rootstock is the lower part of the tree and produces the root system. Rootstock also determines the tree’s final height.
  • The scion produces the upper part of the tree and of course, determines fruit’s characteristics.
  • Both the rootstock and the scion must be carefully selected and each one of them may result in poor production.

Varieties of Olive in India

  • There is no improving cultivar for commercial cultivation.
  • Some varieties are Pickle types olive in Mission, Grosse und, cornicobra and other oil type olives in Canino, Carolina, Frontoio and Coratina.

Growing Requirement in Olive Farming

  • Most varieties of olive trees are self-fertile, meaning that you can get fruit by having just one tree.
  • Pollen from the anthers means the male part of the plant is transferred to the stigma mean the female part of the plant of the same tree.
  • However, there are some varieties of olive trees that are not self-fertile.
  • Those varieties need another tree or sometimes more than one tree for pollination, not of the same variety.
  • The olive tree pollen is transfer primarily by wind.
  • Research findings recommend that growers plant at least three olive varieties in close proximity in their farms to promote some cross-pollination, which has been found to increase yield by at least 10%.
  • The Olive tree thrives in areas with a Mediterranean climate, where mild winters are following by sunny springs and hot summers.
  • The areas where olive trees are cultivated for commercial use must have an average annual temperature of 15-20 °C.
  • The absolute maximum temperature can reach 40 °C without causing damage, but the minimum should not fall below 7 °C.
  • Lower temperatures than this can cause serious damage to the trees.
  • However, a certain amount of cold is necessary for the fruit set.
  • This is the reason why olive trees cannot be grown in tropical climates.
  • Olive farms that are installing on flat sites and sites surround by hills are not only exposed to spring frosts but also run the risk of serious frost damage during the winter.
  • A slightly downward location, resulting in a flat surface, where the cold currents can escape easily, is a proper place to install the grove.
  • Flat places where no frosts or cold winds are reported are also suitable.
  • The average olive tree also needs plenty of sunlight in order to produce a good yield.
  • It also hates excessive soil moisture.
  • Consequently, the farmer must choose a well-drained field, where rainwater cannot easily stagnate.

Fertilizers and Nutrition requirements in Olive Farming

  • Before we apply any fertilization method in our olive grove, we shall check the physical properties of soil like texture, soil permeability etc. as well as the levels of available nutrients.
  • These figures influence various others variables that finally affect yield.
  • Thus, knowing them is useful for dealing with lack or excess of some nutrient and avoiding tree stress.
  • Two very interesting parameters are the soil pH and the soil calcium content because they both affect the absorption of some nutrients that are supplied by fertilizer.
  • The optimum pH for the olive tree is about 6,5 but the average olive tree can produce fruits at soils with pH from 5,5 to 8.
  • A common corrective action in order to fix the soil pH before planting young olive trees is adding lime to the soil.
  • The minimum acceptable nutrients rates after chemical leaf analysis are 1, 5% for N, 0,1% for P and 0,5% for K.
  • Nitrogen is the most important nutrient element when we grow an olive tree for olive oil or table olives.
  • Nitrogen is necessary for germination and production of olives.
  • The main symptom of a lack of nitrogen is small in length annual vegetation.
  • The leaves are much shorter than normal and do not gradually turn deep green as normal leaves.
  • When we diagnose a lack of Nitrogen, we should consult the local agronomist in order to form a rational fertilization program.
  • The organic matter in the various stages of decomposition is beneficial in many ways.
  • It improves soil conditions, such as consistency in light soils.
  • It also improves the texture of heavy soils, functions as pH adjustment, maintains soil moisture, increases soil capacity, activates soil microorganisms and increases the absorption of nutrients.
  • Consequently, organic fertilizers are often the basis of a rational olive fertilization program.
  • Magnesium and Boron are also important for the proper fruit development.

Water supply/Irrigation in Olive Farming

  • The olive tree is resistant to drought but responds greatly to the supply of water by any method.
  • Well irrigated trees tend to produce higher yields, while the annoying phenomenon of Alternate Bearing can be mitigated through a rational and well-designed irrigation system.
  • In general, olive trees that are cultivated for oil need less irrigation than those cultivated for table olives.
  • Productive olive trees are irrigated from the beginning of the growing season until the start of winter rainfalls,
  • Because lack of water can adversely affect the growth of vegetation, fruit set and development of fruit.
  • Most olive farmers irrigate deeply their trees from May-June till harvest in a frequency ranging from once a week to once a month, assuming there are no rainfalls during this period.
  • However, we must be careful not to over-irrigate.
  • According to the University of California, oil production is optimized between 40 and 70%.
  • Higher production is at the high end of this range.
  • Best oil quality is at the lower end.
  • Full irrigation increases pumping costs promotes unnecessary vegetative growth, can reduce flowering, and increases pruning costs.

Pests and Diseases in Olive Farming

  • Most olive tree diseases are caused by bacteria, viruses, and fungi.
  • Crown Gal is caused by the bacterium Agrobacterium tumefaciens and it usually concerns young trees.
  • The most common symptom is tumors that appear in the roots, just above or below the soil line.
  • Infect trees with many galls will gradually become unable to transfer water and nutrients to the upper parts of the tree.
  • As a result, they slowly become weak and they finally die.
  • The bacterium can survive for many years in the soil.
  • Verticillium is a very serious fungal disease, caused by Verticillium dahliae.
  • In a few words, the first symptoms of Verticillium are that the olive leaves start to curl and discolor.
  • The infection then spreads to the other parts of the tree and after a few years, it may result in the death of the tree.
  • The pathogen may live in the soil for 20 years or more.
  • Thus, olive tree growers must be very careful when choosing the field where they will plant the young olive trees.
  • They can avoid soils where tomato, potato or other vegetables were previously planted; as these crops are also susceptible to verticillium Other olive tree diseases are Cercospora leaf spot, Peacock spots, and Olive anthracnose.
  • The olive fly hits mainly the olive trees in the Mediterranean region and can diminish the olive production in a few weeks.
  • Dacus oleaeis actually a small fly that is only fed by olives.
  • The main symptom is dark spots that appear in the flesh of the olive fruit.
  • This is where the hole is made and the eggs are laid. Dacus oleate is a very serious problem for olive farmers.
  • Because not only does it destroy completely on average 50-60% of the production, but it also affects the quality of the remaining 40%.
  • The acidity of the olive oil is highly increased and in most cases, it cannot be marketed for human consumption.
  • In most countries, hydrolyzed baits are used to prevent the population increase of olive fly.

 

Inter-cropping in Olive Farming

  • Inter-cropping is a way of extra income.
  • Any Legume crops like beans, peas, green grams, a black gram can be grown as intercrops in Beal plantation during the rainy season.

Storage/Harvest in Olive Farming

  • Harvesting olives can be made by hand or through sophisticated machines.
  • Most olive farms are based in fields with slope and various other obstacles.
  • As a result, mechanical harvesting is very difficult.
  • Most olive farmers in these countries harvest the olives by hand.
  • They use simple or electrical devices that shake the branches, making the olives drop in the ground.
  • Then, they collect the olives, they put them in special bags and they deliver them to the mill normally during the same day.
  • On the other hand, mechanical harvesting requires high-density olive harvesters.
  • These harvesters consist of a tall tunnel, a movable cab, extended catching length, a full height picking system, and catcher plates.
  • The machine passes over the tree, and inside the tunnel, the branches are shaken so that the olives drop in the plates.
  • However, this method can only be applied in fields where the trees have limited height and are planted under certain patterns.
  • There is a great debate on the optimum harvest time for olives. It depends greatly on weather conditions, olive tree variety, and cultivation methods.
  • It also differs on whether we cultivate olive tree for table olives or for olive oil.
  • Picking the right time is a matter of accumulated experience and can give the olive grower a competitive advantage in terms of production yield, organoleptic characteristics, color, taste, and aroma.
  • Generally, high temperatures during the fall result in early ripening and vice versa.
  • There are many maturity indexes that set the standards for mature olives.
  • Generally, we shall deliver our olives to the mill immediately after harvesting them
  • Because if stored they face multiple risks that may affect their quality.

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