The Picual olive, is the most important variety in Spain, Picual has excellent characteristics to produce olive oil (high performance olive, high productive capacity, easy detachment…).
Picual, is the olive class (Olea Europea Sativa), most present in the Andalusian olive grove. Picual olive variety is the most cultivated olive in Spain. It has a growing extension and currently represents approximately million hectares of olive groves.
The main cultivation area of the Picual olive is Jaén, where more than 90% of the planted olive trees belong to the Picual olive variety. In the Andalusian provinces of Córdoba, Granada and Seville, the Picual olive tree also represents an important extension of the crop.
Its cultivation area is still expanding, although it does not adapt to olive grove in hedge ( Arbequina, Arbosana, Arroniz, Blanqueta, Koroneiki…) is regular, productive and its collection is easier than other varieties.
The Picual olive variety has its origin most likely in Spain, however, they are very old varieties that do not allow to assure its century, nor its exact area of origin.
Synonyms: This olive tree is also known by other names: Nevadillo, Nevadillo Blanco, Marteño, Lopereño, Current, Andaluza, Picúa, Blanco, Fina, Morcona, Jabata, Snowy, Snowy White, Lopereño, Salgar and Early.
Curiosities: The name “Picual”, is due to the picuda form or peak of this olive variety. The variety is also popularly known under the name White Nevadillo, this is because its leaf is whitish compared to the olive variety Black Nevadillo.
Features of Picual Olive Tree
Picual is a variety of olive tree with excellent characteristics. It has been and is the most profitable olive variety for the traditional cultivation of the olive tree.
Productivity: Picual, is a variety of entry into production early and productivity high. With supportive irrigation and proper training pruning, the Picual olive tree takes about 5-6 years to produce good crops.
Vecería: It has a good floral induction, an aspect that makes it a variety of olives that are not very small.
You can interleave high crops with half crops or alternate good crops if the Marteño olive tree has the proper care.
Flowering: Nevadillo Blanco is a variety of self-fertile and medium-flowering olives.
Vigor and bearing of the tree: the Picual olive plant is vigorous and open bearing.
Leaf: the leaf of the variety of Nevadillo olive is elongated and of medium size.
Diseases: Picual tolerates well the tuberculosis and is less appetizing for the fly than other Olive varieties. However, its leaf is sensitive to the fungus of the repilo and is attacked by the plagues of the Prays and the Black olive scale.
Multiplication: It can be easily multiplied by stakes or in nurseries by fogging (semi-silly staking). Therefore, olive nurseriescan sell Picual seedlings at a good price.
Picual Olive, morphological characteristics
Maturation: the olive variety Picualis ripening early
Size: The fruit of the olive Picual is medium size .
Shape: The olive produced by the olive tree Nevadillo Blanco, has elliptical-asymmetric shape.
Skin color: The Marteño olive, reaches maturity, when the skin has a black color.
Pulp: Marteño has a pulp / bone ratio medium-high.
Peduncle: The peduncle of the picual olive is very small in size.
Yield: The Picual olive has a high yield of oil. The fat yield will depend on the nutritional status of the olive tree, load level, ripening of olives, climatic conditions of the growing area etc… Usually the fatty yield of the olive Picual is greater than 20%.
Collection: Picual has low resistance to shedding, an aspect that facilitates collection. Even so, the Picual olive endures well in the olive tree, without easily falling to the ground.
Uses: Picual olive variety is used for oil production. Its quality for table olives (“Not suitable“), is much lower than that of varieties such as Chamomile Cacereña.
Advantages: Variety of productive olive. Sparse would beat Picual oil is stable and of good characteristics. Easy to harvest and multiply vegetatively.
Disadvantages: The Picual variety is not suitable for greening or dressing.
Picual oil features
The Picual olive oil is the most produced in Spain, its main advantage is the high conservation capacity that it has. It can be stored for several years under controlled conditions, maintaining its characteristics and beneficial properties.
Usually the Picual oil is mixed with less stable oils such as Arbequina, Hojiblanca or Weevil.
Taste: Picual oil has a strong flavor, stands out for its bitterness and itching (if it’s new oil ). When the olive is harvested soon (early harvest ), Nevadillo Blanco has fruity aromas with tomato, olive leaf, fig, grass…
Properties: Picual oil has more Oleocanthal (anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-cancer) than other oils. High content of oleic acid (78%), good for fighting high cholesterol. It is one of the oil s most stable s and resistant s to oxidation and thickening.
Price: Currently (2018) you can buy EVOO Picual at approximately 4€/liter. Award-winning olive oils with a protected designation of origin are sold at higher sales prices.
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We have translated the information on our website from Spanish to English. Note that some words may have seen their meaning altered during their translation.