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Pistachio trees
 

GROWING OF PISTACHIO

Pistachio trees have been caltivated in Aegina since 1860, later speading to otherparts of Attica and Greece. Throughout Aegina, the dominant variety is known by the name " Aeginis", or "koilarati" meaning " round", a variety considered high-yieding and of a quality lacking in foreign varieties.

The ideal climate of the island and the unique soil composition lend exceptional flavour and aroma to the Aegina pistachio. This has distinquished it from other pistachios and earning well-deserved recognition as the finestpistachio in the world.

The exclusive right to identify the pistachio as "Aegina pistachio" was secured
by the E.U. regulation of 1263/96, protecting the local pistachio from those of other regions.

THE PISTACHIO CULTIVATION(A. F. Xatziperi - Agriculturalist)

 

The terebinth (photo 1) belongs to the same family as the pistachio and is the hardiest and most suitable rootstock upon which the pistachio can be grafted.

The leaves start to fall in November (photo 2) and the trees remain bare until the end of March.


 

During this dormant phase, the orchards are fertilized and tilled, and the trees are pruned. The buds begin to swell around the beginning of April (photo 3).

The female pistachio begins to bloom in the first two weeks of April (photo 4 - female panicle ready for pollination).


 

For pollination to take place, a male tree is necessary, from which the pollen is carried by the wind (photo 5 - male pistachio).

In the last two weeks of April, the pistachios are beginning to set (photo 6).


 

By the end of July, the nuts are not yet ripe (photo 7-8). But the shell has hardened and the kernel which has appeared at the beginning of June continues its development.

The outer hulls of the filled nuts when fully mature acquire a rosy-red colour where directly exposed to the sun (photo 9).

 

When the skil softens and comes away from the shell easily, it is ready for harvest, around the end of August through September. To harvest the nuts, long sticks whose ends are covered with rubber or cloth are used to beat the branches without injuring them.

Large collecting tarps are spread beneath the trees (photo 10) and the nuts are collected and bagged to the tranffered as quickly as possible to the hulling machines so that the shell does not turn black and render the nuts commercialy unviable.

Pistachio tree Association of Aegina
Miloi location, 180 10, Aegina
Tel. : (+30) 22970-22396, Fax.: (+30) 22970-26400







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