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Our Groves

  

Peter and Debbie Hunter own the Longview Ranch in Winters, CA, a beautiful 140 acre property planted in prunes and olives, which also consists of grazing lands, woodlands, small ponds for wildlife, and a half dozen acres in a habitat and Valley Oak restoration projects, begun by Peter’s mother 2 decades ago, in concert with the Audubon society.

This is our 4th year (2016) of working with the Hunters and the 4th harvest for the groves, which was planted in 2010, and is maturing nicely! The Frantoio, Leccino, Coratina and Pendolino all go into our Stonehouse House Blend, with a few special drums set aside and bottled as Select and Estate.  As we are far enough away from the coast we have virtually no fly problem on the ranch and so use no pesticides.  We do use Round Up to strip spray twice per year along the drip lines, where we cannot mow, as it would endanger the irrigation, but we should be able to stop this practice in the next few years.  Between the rows we mow, and use no herbicides, as the lack of water and summer sun do away with the weeds! 

This year we are mechanically harvesting for the 1st time with a shaker, much quicker than hand harvesting, which we have done in previous years.  Shaking results in less damage to the fruit and trees themselves than mechanical harvesting, which beats the trees up pretty badly and leaves them susceptible to olive knot and other problems.  The trees have been grown with a 3’ truck before branching, to allow for mechanical shaking, as hand-harvesting costs can drive the price of extra virgin olive oil prohibitively high, and one of our main goals at Stonehouse is to get the highest quality evoo to as many people as possible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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