This small member of our well-known olive family has a long history in its Mediterranean home of origin. Prized for its subtle, complex olive oil and culinary applications, these olive jewels can be sliced and used as garnish for cocktails, diced with garlic and onion for snacks, or for the adventurous, pressed for their famous virgin oil.
This small-scale orchard replica will delight for many years to come. Use the general guidelines below as a point of reference.
As bright as possible but avoid excess heat, this will dry out the soil too quickly. In the landscape they enjoy full sun. A location that provides morning sun or filtered light throughout the day is ideal.
Generally, the larger the container, the slower it will dry out the more sun it will tolerate. If grown indoors tree should be kept a minimum of 24” from windows as they will act as a magnifying glass and burn the leaves.
Water daily through hot spells and every other day in the spring and fall if left in the original pot. As needed in the winter. A well balanced liquid fertilizer should be used monthly and is important to the health of your tree.
Vital nutrients are flushed from the soil with each watering and need to be replenished. Olives in general are not heavy feeders. Your local nursery should have an adequate liquid feed available.
Prune to shape as you desire, keeping in mind the small- scale size of the plant and its container. Flowers will appear from small shoots that originate where the leaves meet the stem and the shoot tips in the spring.
Flowers in the spring, harvest in the autumn. If too much new growth is produced at the branch tips, don’t be shy about cutting it back to a lower position to shorten the trees height as it begins to re-grow. Planting in a larger container is the easiest way to keep the plant healthy.
Remove the tree from its pot, during winter, every 2-3 years and remove about 1/3 of the roots. Re-pot with a blended potting soil. This will encourage new roots and keep it growing happily.
Keep the tree from cold extreme temperatures in a bright location through the winter. Depending on your location, you could leave it outside in a frost free area or in a bright, warm room if freezing temperatures occur. As old leaves fall off, fertilize regularly to create new growth and keep the tree productive.