Beautiful and productive Bella Collina Orchards in Ojai CA, 21.6 acres, planted with prized Ojai Pixie Tangerines and Hass avocados. Excellent frost-free growing microclimate, great soils and GAP/GFS certification. Graced with privacy, tranquility and beautiful views, the property includes a wonderful 3 bedroom/3.5 bathroom home, 2 bedroom/2 bathroom guest-house, refreshing and relaxing in-ground pool and spa, sweet outdoor living areas including deck, cooking area and covered porch with fireplace, a converted stable that is now an exercise room, office and horse stall, and a large garage/equipment building including all tools and equipment to run the ranch. Owned photovoltaic solar system. All areas of this property show high attention to detail, quality and maintenance. With additional family fruit trees, vegetable beds and even bananas, all aspects and appointments combine to make Bella Collina a property to be your home, your destination and with income producing orchard!
BELLA COLLINA ORCHARDS
455, 484, 459 CAMINO CIELO, OJAI 93023
Located on a south-facing slope at an elevation of 1150 feet. Excellent microclimate for living and growing things with plenty of sunshine and breezes. Frost-free due to elevation and nighttime downslope air movement.
As with most of the Ojai Valley, citrus and avocados have been grown in this area for many years. There is no evidence that the property was ever used for purposes other than orchards and a home site.
Main house rebuilt ground up – 2010/11. Guest house built 2013/14
Windows and exterior doors, Main and guest house
Anderson dual-pane windows and doors with exterior clad finishes that are weatherproof and never need painting. Wood interior surfaces. Main house front door, guest-house front and French doors are Douglas fir.
Board and bat siding – Main and guest house
Hardy cementaceous board that is fire, mold, mildew and termite proof. Painted
The home has three masonry wood burning fireplaces with gas igniter bars. One is on the deck outside and does not have a flue door. The ones in the living room and master bedroom do.
The main house has two sources of potable water. High quality spring water from the historic “Big Spring On The Mesa” owned by the Auric family at Ojala - 65,000 gallon per year allocation to be used inside the house only. The other source is regular Casitas Water District residential water. All water is filtered through a copper ion CL Free system. The guest house uses Casitas water and has its own CL Free system.
Both homes have Rinnai tankless hot water heaters run with propane. The main home also has a recirculation pump for the hot water.
Both homes have propane heating and electric air conditioning.
28 panels. 6 KW hour capacity installed on stable roof in 2011
14 panel 3.5 KW capacity installed on garage roof in 2014
All system owned by Bella Collina– not leased.
Linked to main 400 amp panel for net metering with Southern California Edison.
The main and guest houses are served by Direct TV. Excede Satellite is the internet provider. Both houses have wifi and the main house has a Sonos music system with speakers inside and outside the house.
Dreamdecks wood decking - pressure treated with polymers to make it termite, mold, mildew and warp resistant.
Bella Collina has two. A built-in, digitally controlled Memphis wood pellet grill and a “Santa Maria” wood masonry fire pit with adjustable grill and gas igniter bar at the bottom.
Pool and Spa
Viking fiberglass in ground with Pentair Intellitouch filter, pump and controller – Wailani copper ion sanitation. Motorized pool cover by Cover pro. All new in 2011.
Upper Camino Cielo is a private road maintained by the three property owners that use it. The road is signed as private and provides no access to trails, etc. The road was extensively repaired and repaved in 2012.
As a rural property and adjoining a national forest, various animals may occasionally cross the property going to the river and or into the mountains. We do occasionally see evidence of deer, coyotes and black bears in the orchard areas. They are naturally shy and except for an occasional deer, only out at night and during certain times of year.
Historically, the property has had two addresses. The county recognizes 455 as the legal address, 484 is the mailing address. The guest house was assigned a separate address when recently built, 459. This makes it a legal second dwelling for rental or occupancy purposes.
Approximately 18 acres planted net of roads, etc. comprised of 11 irrigation/planting blocks: Blocks 1-5 are Pixie Mandarins – approximately 8 acres, Blocks 6-11 are Hass Avocados – approximately 10 acres
Soils on the property generally consist of decomposed sandstone loam with occasional cobbles and larger sandstone boulders.
Currently, orchard management is handled by the owner with one full time employee. The full-time employee is a skilled orchard man with experience in all aspects of operations. Owners who do not want to be as involved can employ an outside orchard management service to oversee regular operations or as a back-up. Grove Care and Progressive Land Management have some history with Bella Collina and would be in a good position to serve in this role.
Pixie harvesting is coordinated by Ojai Pixie Growers/Packers. Fruit is shipped to Villa Park in Fillmore, a Sunkist certified packing house. Pixies are sold by OPG/P cooperatively with other Pixie growers in Ojai but fruit is packed separately and paid based on quality and size per grower. Avocado harvesting is coordinated by Index Fresh who also packs and sells the fruit.
With new food safety standards, most orchards must now be GAP certified to sell fruit to major chains. Bella Collina is GAP certified with a perfect 100% score on its last review. While the orchard/fruit is not technically organic, all fertilizers used with the exception of nitrogen meet organic standards. We are proud to list Whole Foods as one of our buyers. GAP reviews can be coordinated by Index Fresh.
Asian Citrus Psyllid is an insect that can be the carrier of HLB, a potentially lethal infection for all types of citrus. As a result of the threat, Ventura County and many areas of the state are now required to spray citrus orchards twice a year to control the spread of the ACP insect. Spraying is done by Associates Insectary using products designed to protect beneficial insects as much as possible.
Beneficial Insects / Associates Insectary
Associated Insectary is a non-profit, grower operated integrated pest management company of which Bella Collina is a member. Throughout the year, they inspect the orchard and release beneficial insects when necessary to control pests such a whitefly and mealybug.
Each spring, Morris Honey Company brings hives to the ranch to help pollinate the blossoms of Pixies and Avocados. There is no charge for pollination but they get the honey (with a case or two for the owner).
Bella Collina owns all equipment necessary to operate the orchard. Such equipment will be included in the sale of Bella Collina including but limited to:
Kubota tractor – recently installed new tires, hydraulic hoses, runs well
Dosko Chipper – used heavily and in good condition
Spray-rig – used for spraying fertilizer on trees – new pump and newer motor
Chain saws, other tools (chain saws and weed-eater are newer)
Ford Ranger pick up truck- good condition, newer tires
Painted steel structure – inner and outer steel with plywood between. Raised heavy wood floor on concrete piers. Part of the floor was completely replaced in 2015. Hard conduit wired throughout with four plug outlets and fluorescent fixtures. Approximately 1800 square feet.
System is fed by pressurized, potable water from Casitas Water District. Water is billed at a very favorable “ag” rate (agricultural) with an annual allocation – currently at 12,744,000 gallons. Water is distributed through buried lines made of PVC to pressure regulators and then directly to the heads through on ground hoses. Electric valves turn water on and off in the various blocks by buried low voltage wiring terminating at a controller in the garage. Controller and all wiring were installed new in 2011. A five-horsepower booster pump is used to ensure proper irrigation of all areas of the orchard regardless of elevation. This booster pump was replaced in 2015.
The grand majority of Bella Collina is outside the current Ventura County well-drilling moratorium zone. Bella Collina does not have a well, but some neighbors do have wells used for irrigation.
Avocados and Citrus can be alternate bearing i.e. one year a heavy crop, the next year a light crop. This can be influenced by climate, orchard practices such as irrigation, fertilization, and pruning. As a result, gross income from the orchard can vary year to year. The “on” or “off” years may not affect avocados and pixies in the same year.