Sunset over the olive grove

Whether to Photoshop or not to Photoshop? Or in this case use the filters in the very easy to use online graphic design tool, Canva, which I’ve rather fallen in love with. The blogging and social media side of business is all pretty new to me, and Canva has made the image creation aspect of this much more straightforward. For me in any case. We’ve got enough on our plate already, like how to prune and harvest all the trees in our olive grove…

So this week we’ve managed to walk and map the whole grove. We have looked at every tree. Just over 1000 of them! That took a while… They were all planted at the same time, but there’s a lot of variation between the biggest and the smallest of them. Some are still quite spindly and skinny, especially at the end of the rows where they’re more exposed to the wind. Others are huge, tall, and bushy with very dense canopies. Pruning these is going to be quite a challenge! There’s a lot of variation in olive fruit volume too, which we expected. The trees haven’t been actively managed for some time, and olives are by nature an alternate bearing tree, so you tend to get a heavy crop one year and a small one the next.

We’ve been lucky with the weather, it’s been mostly dry so we’ve been out and about amongst the trees, checking the boundary fencing, and doing a few other chores. And having lots of BBQs! The rain that arrived at the end of this week was definitely needed in the region though. There are huge cracks in the ground in some places; we were worried that we might lose Blizzard a couple of times!

Blizzard and Gunner in the olive grove.

Blizzard and Gunner in the olive grove.

So, to go back to my original question about photo editing. So many of the photos I see now, I don’t know whether they’re real or not? Does it matter?! There’s often publicity about whether people / celebrities have been photoshopped, but less about landscapes. In the photos with this post, the top one is the original. Taken with an iPhone. Obviously! Who carries a camera these days?! The bottom one had a filter applied and the brightness and contrast adjusted to make the colours more intense. I thought the sunset looked awesome at the time, but compared to the bottom one it looks washed out! I always find it’s difficult to capture the atmosphere of light on film. I probably need more patience and practice, and perhaps a proper camera…

Authenticity is very important to us. It’s difficult to know if a lot of what you see and buy is what you think it is, and this is very true in the food arena. Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a product where the labelling can be misleading, and adulteration is also known to be a problem in some markets. Australian labelling standards are very stringent, and aim to minimise consumer confusion. So it should be easy to tell from the label on the bottle whether an olive oil is extra virgin, and when and where it was produced. The Australian olive harvest is just getting under way, so keep your eyes open in the coming weeks for the new season oil which will start hitting the shelves. FFx