Olivery News

Olive Tree Pruning October 18, 2019 13:04

Geoff doing the mahi in the grove. A video of olive tree pruning.

Olives Win Class Champion.... again September 26, 2019 14:14

At the recently held Royal Easter Show Olive Awards we were delighted to receive the Class Champion awards for 

Less is More Olives January 31, 2018 08:45

Telegraph Hill Olives NZ

My favourite olive tree. It always produces the biggest olives and a lot of them.

The heavy pruning earlier in the season has exaggerated this, it is looking like the experiment of more pruning = less olives = larger olives is working.  Roll on Harvest.

November in the Olive Grove November 20, 2017 16:31

Telegraph Hill Olive Grove
See how to spot a set flower on an Olive tree, and the mechanics of flowering.

Picking Olives...again March 31, 2016 15:21

This year I had some help from my family. Was it #childlabour or #familybusiness....?  An ice cream reward certainly helped their enthusiasm!

We picked two trees, it took 3 hours and we got 58kg the best yield yet from these trees. 

These are the two big green olive trees that we grow at the Olivery and use just for certain customers, and at home.

Picking Olives Telegraph HillPicking Olives Telegraph HillPicking Olives Telegraph HillPicking Olives Telegraph Hill

These will be delicious!

Picking Olives Telegraph Hill

Gotta get this last olive!

Spain and Japan in Pictures February 3, 2016 11:21

Geoff went to Spain (for research) and Japan (for customer visit) in January 2016.  

A summary in pictures below.

Olive & Salt Shop Tokyo Japan

Mr Nagagawa, Ayumi Kudo & Geoff in Mr Nagakawa's shop Olive & Salt, Tokyo.

Japanese Temple Tokyo Japan Telegraph Hill

Plenty of beautiful temples in Tokyo

Japanese Green Tea Ceremony Telegraph Hill

Best Green Tea I've ever had with these three #GreenTeaCeremony

Olive Trees in Spain Telegraph Hill

Ahh Spanish Olive trees - its a man made forest

Olive Press Telegraph Hill

This museum had an old press on display.  A donkey to crush the olives and a Matt press at the back.

Graffiti Spain Telegraph Hill

We need order, humanity, more lego...

Olive Grove Spain Telegraph Hill

Not a blade of grass on the ground.....

Suerte Alta Olive Grove Spain Telegraph Hill

....and 100,000 trees at Suerte Alta

Olive Trees and Castle Zuheros Spain Telegraph Hill

This 800 year old castle is in the way of the Olive trees....

Old Olive Tree Telegraph Hill

100 year old Olive tree

Olive Trees and Processing Mill Zuheros Spain Telegraph Hill

Olive trees surround the olive Mill bottom right.

Traditional Olive Tree Farming Spain Telegraph Hill

Traditional Olive farming practice.  No grass, earth or stones in a circle around the tree to collect rain water, up to three trees planted in the same hole.

Olive Trees forever Spain Telegraph Hill

These were being picked by hand, one tree at a time....

Telegraph Hill - Villas Grove September 30, 2015 13:47

Telegraph HillTelegraph HillTelegraph HillTelegraph HillTelegraph Hill

Beautiful Olives May 26, 2015 16:15

All in a years work...

Pick an Olive Tree in 45 seconds May 21, 2015 09:28


Here you can see how the Olive Harvester picks the trees at Telegraph Hill.  This variety is South Australian Verdale.  Approx 25kg per tree.  


NZ's best Artisan Producers March 16, 2015 13:51

NZ best Artisan Producers Dish Pantry Telegraph HillRecently launched Dish Pantry has recommendations of New Zealand's best Artisan stockists, producers and products.  Telegraph Hill is of course on their list with featured products Burnt Orange & Fennel Olives and Balsamic Drizzle.

Dish Pantry is part of the Dish Magazine publication, NZ's best food magazine!

It links back into their Dish Magazine site with fantastic recipes and photography.

How To Prune An Olive Tree video 2 January 22, 2015 16:48

Video 2. Finishing off the olive tree.  It is now looking lighter, ready to grow large fruit this year.  We are following the theory of less fruit hanging on the tree = larger individual fruit size

How to Prune an Olive Tree video 1 January 22, 2015 16:43

Video 1. How to prune an Olive tree with a chain saw. Aston making it look easy.

Rabbit View From My Office Window January 22, 2015 10:55

Telegraph Hill Olive Tree Rabbit
As I locked up last night I saw this very cute rabbit grazing under the olives.  How lucky we are to work in  a place like this!
Telegraph Hill rabbit

Night Harvest May 16, 2014 11:36

Olives picked today are processed tonight.  Here is some pictures from last nights processing.

I find the olives always look better at night, I think it is 'selective seeing' in the low light...certainly the spills look smaller until the next day.

I use this equipment to deleaf and size out the small olives.  The large olives go into barrels and vats for fermentation in brine and the smalls get pressed for oil within 24 hours..

Harvesting 2014 May 15, 2014 16:37

Have had a lot of inquiries for Fresh Olives for home curing, so have made these available on the website.  Check them out.

Some pictures from this years harvest .  

Harvest Highlights May 7, 2014 16:30

Telegraph Hill Olives
This shows the matrix we use to identify the quality of the olives after harvest as they come in from the grove.  This lot is from our Haumoana contract grower.
Harvest notes from the log:
Manzanillo Olives
Good colour range
A little disease (see the two green olives five rows down position three & four have brown spots).  These will need hand grading out.
Not many stalks attached (makes for happy hand graders)
Good size olives
No wrinkle
No frost damage
Acceptable leaf and sticks quantity

Harvesting Green Olives May 7, 2014 11:54

Hand picking olives at Telegraph Hill
Here I am picking green olives on the 31st March at the Olivery.  This is an Ouvo D'Piccione tree, its olives a variety known for their large green fruit.  This tree had 35kg of olives on it, a fantastic yield!  I immediately thought I know how to grow olives.... until the next two trees had zero olives, sigh... such is horticulture.  This precious crop will be sold through the Olivery tasting room and to local restaurants.  When its gone its gone!

H4 - Heddie the Olive Tree in March March 3, 2014 11:11

Kalamata Olive Tree Telegraph Hill H4

Here is a picture from today of Kalamata Olive tree 'H4' or 'Heddie' as Eddie its owner likes to call it.  We are pleased to report that this tree is flourishing.  You can see the new growth rising 600mm above the stump.

Eddie has chosen well! 

The next picture is of F8, our 'slow starter'.  Transplanted in October at the same time as the rest of the trees, this tree is the last to sprout.  You can just see on the right hand side of the tree a small shoot - approx 20mm long. 

Kalamata Olive tree Telegraph Hill

This is especially pleasing as it means we had a 100% success rate with the transplanted trees.

Grove Update - So How Big Are Those Olives? March 3, 2014 10:48

Telegraph Hill Manzanillo OlivesWith Harvest fast approaching (May) we are starting to asses how the olives are doing.  Big change this year, I am measuring the olives and recording their size.  This is to give a benchmark for future years as to where the olives are at.  I hope to make better growing and harvest decisions as a result.  The ultimate objective is to grow larger olives by changing the variables on the grove.

This picture show the Manzanillo tree at the Olivery.  At 19mm it is a big fruit for this time of year.  The average width is around 16mm.

Good tree health and a continuation of the good summer weather will help these olives size up in the next 8 weeks.

Grove update Eddie checks his tree February 10, 2014 16:07

Telegraph Hill Kalamata Olive treeEddie is our youngest olive tree adopter.  His recent visit (Oct 2013) was soon after our transplanting of the Kalamata Olives.  We tracked his tree from its old location to new.  It has a new number (H4) and Eddie has appropriately named it 'Heddie'.

We gave Eddie the choice of new tree but he chose to stay with this one.  Well done Eddie we like your loyalty!

We are pleased to report that 33 of the 34 transplanted trees are growing well with plenty of new growth.  One has not sprouted yet, but we are remaining positive!

Kalamata Olive Telegraph Hill


'Heddie' at 31 December 2014, some sprouts coming....

If your tree has moved we will let you know your new number with March packages.  

Remember we have a product guarantee - we guarantee your products even in a bad year (and this will be a bad year for 'Heddie' & other transplanted olive trees)

All march packages will contain 6 pouches of yummy olives.



Wild swarm of bees at Telegraph Hill November 26, 2013 13:13

Bee swarm at Telegraph Hill
Morag Black and Janet Luke at Telegraph Hill with the bees

We recently came to work one morning and found a swarm of bees in an olive tree.  

While it sounds like a nursery rhyme we weren't going near it.  A quick call to local green urban living expert Janet Luke and the bees were re-homed to one of her 'top bar' hives.

These bees are now residing on the top deck of local pizza restaurant Pipi, in Havelock North


left:  Adrienne keeping a respectful distance!          right:  Morag and Janet work out a plan.

 Check the video to see Janet move the swarm.  

New e-book Remarkable Recipes by international olive oil expert Judy Ridgway November 26, 2013 13:04

Judy Ridgway Remarkable Recipes olive oil e bookTelegraph Hill extra virgin olive oil features in the new e-book Remarkable Recipes by international olive oil expert Judy Ridgway.  It is used in the recipes for Feta and Olive Dip And for Telegraph Hill Fish and Chips.  Judy remembers with nostalgia her very first visit to New Zealand when she stayed in a cottage on the estate and enjoyed an excellent dinner with Rose Gresson, then running the Telegraph Hill groves.

All 76 recipes in the book come from olive growers and olive oil producers around the world because, as Judy says, who knows more about cooking with extra virgin olive oil?  “Some of the most interesting and delicious dishes I have ever eaten have been served at the tables of the olive growers and oil producers”, she comments.

The recipes are arranged in sections according to the time taken to prepare the dishes with great fast food dishes followed by quick and easy breakfasts, snacks and suppers as well as salads and cold dishes.  Savoury dishes that take a little longer come next with a final section on baking with extra virgin olive oil. Some of the recipes are traditional, others are family favourites and yet others are modern creations from gifted cooks but one thing Judy is sure of is that they are all quite different to the recipes found in general cookbooks of the various regions.       

The e-book is available in kindle form from Amazon and in a form suitable for iPads, tablets and the like from iTunes for iBookstore.

Art in the Olives Festival November 8, 2013 12:21

A fantastic day had by all.  2014 will be held early November again. 

DJ Floyd setting the atmosphere at Telegraph Hill

DJ Floyd set a lovely ambiance for the day with his 'soul food music' theme.




Jules Clarke at Telegraph Hill


Jules Clarke painting live!














Olive Oil Massage at Telegraph Hill


Olive Oil Massage...mmmmm














Rae West at Telegraph Hill


The amazing Rae West 














Ricks Terstappen Paddy Cooper and jules Clarke at Telegraph Hill


Ricks Terstappen and Paddy Cooper both has amazing sculptures.

Champion Olives for Telegraph Hill September 25, 2013 09:52

Olive & Olive Oil Awards Telegraph HillRoyal Easter Show awards are announced with Telegraph Hill getting champion olives.  We also picked up a silver medal for our Barnea Manzanillo Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Full list of winners are on the easter show website.

It's raining Kalamata Olives June 13, 2013 11:22

Once a year we get to see this sight.  I love my Kalamata olives!

5-10 Olives is a healthy addition to the diet May 22, 2013 15:07

Kalamata Olives at Telegraph Hill OliveryI was pleased to read today in the June 'Healthy Food Guide' that "A serving of five to 10 olives is a healthy addition to the diet.  The phenolic compounds in olives have been studied for their antioxidant properties."  We all know that extra virgin olive oil is a 'good oil' it follows that the olives have this goodness in them too.

The magazine does mention that as olives are processed in salt brines there can be around 320 mg of sodium in 5 olives.  This made me think, does the salt in olives 'offset' the goodness in them?  The answer is NO it does not! As long as you eat a balanced diet. 

The recommended daily intake of sodium (mainly found in salt in our diet) is 920-  2300mg.  Interestingly 2300mg is equivalent to 1 teaspoon of salt. 

Sold Out of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, more on the way May 10, 2013 16:53


Sorry last years olive oil has sold out, which means we will be filling orders in 6 weeks time once the new season oil has settled.   We have pressed 2013 olive oil but it is pungent with high astringency so needs some time to settle, level out, and balance.  Just as soon as this happens (6 weeks) we'll bottle it.  It will then be labelled fresh or 'olio nuevo' oil, it will taste absolutely delicious - fresh, crisp and a powerful aroma of herbs and grass.

Harvest has started May 9, 2013 10:57

 First olives in this season were from the Olivewood grove in Esk Valley. Olivewood grove is hand picked by Julie and Zane due to the sloping hills the grove is placed on.  The planting format was in the old style of thinking of placing manzanillo trees as pollinators among the rows of other olive varieties. This means Julie and Zane first have to find the Manzanillo trees (about 1 in 20) dotted around the grove before harvesting!

Soon we will harvest April 30, 2013 09:29

Manzanillo Olives ready to harvestCheck out these olives!  This picture of the Manzanillo olives on the trees in the Villa grove.  They are huge! Its been a fantastic growing season this year.  We've had healthy trees and low rainfall - a drought in fact!  

Looking to harvest in a week or so, around the 6th of May.

Interesting how the olives are green and black right next to each other.  

Green Olive Harvest Begins April 4, 2013 03:35


Today I harvested the big green olive tree.  We think it is a Uovo D'Piccione or UDP for short.  We ended up with three of these among the Kalamata trees due to a mix up at the nursery.  Its very hard to tell olive trees apart, especially when they are still seedlings resulting in nursery mix ups being a regular occurrence.

This one tree produced 14kg of fruit, which we will process and make available through the Olivery shop.

As the picture shows they are a large fruit, they have a nutty & light olive flavour.    

Cabernet wine & Olive Oil Easter eggs March 22, 2013 13:39

Olive Oil Easter EggsCabernet drizzle and olive oil centers, with dark chocolate coat.

In what perhaps is a world first, Vinnie Beaumont at Telegraph Hill has made a cabernet wine and olive oil Easter egg.

This is definitely an egg for adult taste, while sweet from the cabernet drizzle, the olive oil gives richness and depth, with a chocolate coated finish.  These delectable eggs are strictly adults only!

The gooey centre is made of Cabernet Drizzle and Olive Oil.  Utilising his Chef skills Vinnie has combined these two ingredients into a gooey centre.  Then covered with dark chocolate.  With each egg just a mouthful they are a perfect for desert canapés 

The eggs come in a three pack with a dark chocolate, white chocolate drizzle and olive powder 


“You can definitely taste the oil in the filling showing how olive oil can highlight to good flavours in food” says Vinnie.

Vinnie making easter eggs from olive oilWe’ve made these eggs as a fun reward for our customers who visit the Olivery shop.  Just something a little different and fun to eat after a day of children and chocolate!

Traditionally olive oil is used when painting Easter eggs.  Olive oil is used when creating the marbling effect on the shell.  Beautiful patterns are created using the oil to displace the dye. 

Olives New Zealand DVD March 18, 2013 13:17

 View this latest promotional DVD from Olives New Zealand the national body for growers in NZ.

It gives a good background on growing olives and what it is that makes New Zealand olive oil so good.

Kalamata olive grafts March 11, 2013 11:26

You can clearly see the graft splicing into the existing trunk and branches.  It looks to be a good bond.  The bond will be tested in the years ahead as the branch gains weight and volume.

This is year three for these Kalamata grafts.  It has been two and a half years since they were grafted, so this year is the first fruit. While its only a small quantity on this graft it is a promising start.

Interestingly another graft tree has grown faster than this one it is three meters tall.  It has no fruit this year.  Our theory as to why? It has been happily putting energy into growing tree rather than fruit.  Quite why it chose to do this is another theory again!