Olive oil is a deeply rooted in Greek culture, no matter what happens The olive tree will always be here!
The olive tree has existed in Greece since people existed in the region of the eastern Mediterranean itself. From Asia Minor and Syria it spread through Greece between 6000 and 8000 years ago. A symbol of peace and friendship, a gift of Goddess Athena to the Athenians, honouring the city with her name because of it. This is what makes the humble olive tree sacred to the Greeks.
The cultivation and trade of olive trees in Greece has built houses, fed and raised families, helped family members study and has been a currency for thousands of years. The whole Greek culture assembles around the olive tree, with respect and honour.
In February the trees are pruned to prepare them for the spring, right after the harvest. In April - May we start to see the first buds forming and in late May the flowers bloom.
It is by late June that we start to see small fruits forming, this is when the journey of insight begins, from this point on we can calculate roughly how many olives we might yield, but it is the summer and early autumn that will determine their fate!
If the summer is dry and extremely hot, this might harm the fruit, if it is too mild and humid, there is the threat of the olive fly getting to the fruit and destroying them, it is a constant balance between the forces of nature as to what the outcome might be.
In Greece we do have the luck of still having good weather and we say this due to the ever changing weather conditions that Global warming brings with it.
One thing is for sure as long as the olive tree blooms it will always be here!
View the Gaea video on what exactly the olive tree means to Greek people here