Spring harvest

Hello !

the summer is here and the garden started already giving

the end of spring brought a lot of food for now and preserved for later. Lentils

garlic,

a lot of mulberries that gave us jam, syrup, vinegar and hopefully tsipouro !

and some of the first fruits from the farm

Building continued this last month on the north part of the house

We were honored to have a visit from the green witch Robin Rose Bennett who shared with us her knowledge about the medicinal properties of herbs

That s it for now, I leave you with more flora and fauna photos

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The return of the gardens

Life is normal finally in paliomilos after the storm of the olives. the focus now is on the gardens and the house and some things here and there.

Inti and jeroen have done an amazing job this year on the garden side, rejuvenating the soil and restructuring the shape and irrigation.

apart from the main garden we have some extensions this year with the hugelbeds, which are looking really good

garlic, onions fields, chickpeas and a 3 sisters (corn, beans, squashes) field

With the huge harvest comes a mountain of olive leaves outside the olive oil press, so we decided to built a Jean Pain compost to have extra hot water of more then 50 C !

This year we went big with grafting and were very successful with pears and apples on wild pear rootstock, plums and apple on plum and quince, but still not successful on citrus which will try again later in the summer.

Now we focus on the house, renovating and adding some extra functionality

and off course we had to clean the olive branches, pile the wood and we took out a few sick trees and we are going back to that in October

More on house updating on the next post !

After The Harvest

this harvest was a landmark… not only for us, but many areas around Greece had the biggest harvest ever, this year. After the olive oil olives, we had a month of “rest”, during which…

we got more chicken, electric fence powered by a solar panel and now the chics are free ranging for the first time. Apart from eating free, they work for us by weeding and fertilizing the garden.

after the chicken had finished their work we moved them and sheet mulched this part of the garden

started Hügelkultur (more on this in the next post) and finally the summer nurseries took off.

In the last week of February the Kalamata olives were ready to be picked as the cold receded and they un-shriveled. We called a team of friends to help out and in two weeks we picked 10 tons of Kalamata finally completing this Odyssey that started on the 4th of September, half a year ago.

a party followed to celebrate and start the After The Harvest era in paliomylos

Now we rest and enjoy the spring, full of flowers as you ll see in the following photos, and therefore the bees allowed us to steal for the first time a bit of honey since they have so much food right now

till next time, enjoy the Spring !

olive…

olive, olive, olive and another olive…. and then another one and another one, and after that an olive… and yesterday olive and today olive and tomorrow olive.. 80 tons of olive…

5 months picking olives from sunrise to sunset (sometimes with no lunch break)… we (Inti, Jeroen and myself) just see and speak olive now ! and no, no it s not over yet ! in March we continue with the Kalamata olives that have shriveled from the cold now… another 3 weeks of olive to complete this enormous production.

a big thanks to all that helped out this year ! the people is who made this task bearable in the end, so thank you all !

The dutch team arrived in the beginning of October, brought everything we were missing in the house, build their home in a day and never missed an olive

apart from olive… we had a bit more of harvesting,

some planting

and a lot but a lot of cooking…

i leave you with some more non olive moments from these last 5 months, till next time !

var2var3

The bandaloop (deck)

A short but very important post. For the last two months we ve been working on the canal behind the house that used to bring the water to the watermill, 200 years ago.The final part was the work on the upper level.

The landscape of Paliomylos is now very different, a special place, the Bandaloop (deck), has been added to the farm and we had to celebrate this with a big party and good friends and family.

On the side of the building work, we put together a bike powered version of the flour mill.

That s it for this month, next post will come late as for the next 4 months we ll be picking olives, all the best !

a new era

many things happened in the last month and a half, one very sad but many good ones, so it feels like a new stage starts in paliomylos.
Starting with the bad news, Loop is not with us anymore after four years of great moments. He ll always mark the memories of the beginning here in Paliomylos.

Moving on, as nature always does, trees, gardens and cats are doing great and in the house Valentin brought good energy, presents and friends.

So the harvest of early summer apart from the usual garden veggies

this year includes lentils

capers

and an amazing potato yield from just a bed of 8 m2

The usual tomato sauces, pickles and dried preserves are happening on a daily rate as usual for this time of the year

but the new goodies from Belgium, have now transformed the kitchen to a proper homesteading food processing spot

From Belgium also came a special short visit of a scout group. They carried out the big task of a stone staircase by themselves in only 3 days of work, thanks guys !

and last but not least the works on the canal are continuing and we are hoping to have the complete terrace ready for August, lets see ! A serious novelty is the welding machine that Thanasis gave us as a gift. Metal is added to the building artilery after stones, wood, COB and mortars

enjoy the rest of the summer !

spring overload

back to the screen after two months of hard spring work. Water, olives, the garden and the newly arrived bees kept us more than busy.. rather exhausted i d say.

The heaviest but also most important job is the maintenance of the canal that brings the water to our house, the cooperative and the olive grove. Unfortunately this is a chore for most farmers and the turnout in these few days that are needed for the cleaning is very disappointing… more so for the cleaning of the difficult covered parts, that judging from the amount of soil I found there, must have been untouched for years. I still have fingers numb from the 14 hours I spent alone in the tunnels one Saturday, early this May… it s really sad that the self-organisation when it comes to natural resources such as the water in this case, is considered a chore, and for me this is one of the main reasons of the decline of the greek rural areas, everything is expected to be solved by the state, subsidies and heavy machinery…

At least this year we have a lot of rain, water in the river and the trees are happy. This and the cold winter have resulted in trees giving fruit for the first time like the pistachios, apricots, peaches, persimmon, feijoa, raspberries and also the olive trees are finally full of olives !

The garden completely changed in a month, from the broad bean jungle it transformed to the summer veggies jungle.

Last year the chicken, this one the bees ! With the kind donation of two hives from Giannis K and the help of Vaggelis D., both having their bees close by, we started this wonderful adventure and started learning about the magical world of the bees.

We also started with grafting, so far with two successes, on almond and wild pear.

Just before the overload of spring garden work we had started with the extension of the mojito terrace that we started last year. Now finally we find time to continue this exciting project.

enjoy the summer !