Save my Olive Trees, part 2

Possible solutions for Xylella

When I found out that the olive trees on my TinyTrullo land are infected with the deadly Xylella virus, I wrote this blog, hoping I could find a solution. Many people responded with concern, others came up with possible solutions, and some helped by adopting an olive tree. Those adoptions help to finance the various experiments.

What has happened so far?


For 4 weeks there has been an aerosol with a special medicine in the sap stream of the trees. If all goes well, you should see results soon, for example with my neighbor from HartjePuglia, where new leaves have started growing on the dried-up branches. This would mean that the sap flow, which is slowly closing due to the bacteria, would open again a little. Fingers crossed that it will work for me too!


The company Bionova offered to send 6 different medicines and nutritional supplements to make both the tree and the soil healthy again. Unfortunately, the Italian post finds it difficult to deliver them, so they are still roaming around somewhere, but have not yet arrived in my country…

Turkish alchemist

I came into contact with someone who knows a Turkish alchemist, someone who makes all kinds of medicines and solutions. Indeed, they also turned out to have a solution for all kinds of tree diseases, which they are convinced should also help against Xylella. They were eager to try it out, as it might mean recognition for them and the opportunity to help many more trees. The only thing is: how do we get the drug, which is not officially recognized, to Italy? DHL wouldn’t take it. After weeks of research, the only solution turned out to be to have someone fly from Istanbul to Puglia with two jerrycans of the stuff in their suitcase. Yusuf is now in Italy and I also flew over for 2 days to supervise this process.


Now there is a dilemma: both Invaio and the Turkish stuff are going to be too much for my trees, then we reach the limit of copper and zinc and they can still die. Waiting to treat, or betting on the wrong drug, could mean that the disease is too advanced and the tree is irreversibly damaged. So my plan is as follows: this week I will treat the trees that do not have Invaio (the young olive trees and the fruit trees and some older olive trees from the neighbours) with the Turkish remedy. In a few weeks, we will compare the results, and then I will choose which drug to continue with.
At least I feel like I’m doing something. Many neighbours still say “I hope it passes” and “maybe my trees will survive” and “years ago there was a disease like that, it went away on its own”

Other Natural Resources

Naturally, this disease is the result of monoculture and soil depletion. That is why I will also follow other advice to enrich the soil:

  • I have already sprinkled grey sea salt, which contains a lot of minerals
  • I’m going to plant beans on the land, which are then mixed with the soil again: an old practice of putting nutrients into the soil that has unfortunately fallen into disuse.

Do you know any other things I can do?

Thanks for all your support and comments!

If you still want to help: adopting an olive tree or ordering olive oil from the coming harvest helps me enormously. And it’s fun!

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