We live in one of the five Mediterranean climate regions of the world. The others are Western Australia, Chile, South Africa and the Mediterranean region, including Italy.
All five of these regions share a mild climate and a similar plant palette. For instance, during a visit to the famous Chianti wine region of Tuscany in Italy, you’ll find an environment similar to parts of San Luis Obispo County where the winters are clement, the sky is sunny, and the yearly rainfall is scant. There, the rolling hills of Tuscany are covered in ribbons of grapevines, interspersed with small farms that are planted with olive trees and aromatic lavender.
Some wonderful plants have adapted to these Mediterranean climates. Olives, lavender and a long list of beautiful plants do well in climates that receive lower annual rainfall.
The next Advice to Grow By workshop — “Under the Tuscan Sun” — will feature presentations on cultivating and maintaining plants found in northern Italy, including fruiting olive trees and lavender. Useful parallels will be drawn from small farms and regional gardening in Tuscany.
The workshop will begin with the general concept of a Tuscan landscape and will then focus on the care of fruiting olive trees, specifically Tuscan cultivars as they are similar to our California Mission olive tree. We’ll discuss irrigation techniques, fruit fly management, harvest procedures, and the techniques used for processing olives for extra virgin olive oil.
Join the Master Gardeners and a local olive grower for “Under the Tuscan Sun” from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday. We’ll meet under the shaded pergola in the Garden of the Seven Sisters, 2156 Sierra Way, San Luis Obispo. Seats fill up quickly so come early for a good seat! No pets please; service animals only.
The garden will remain open to the public from noon to 2 p.m.