There’s a reason the Greek poet Homer once dubbed Greek Olive Oil “liquid gold”. Like the tree itself, the olives produced from Greek Olive Trees are some of the best in the world. This tree is long lived. Follow these directions carefully, and you will be enjoying your own Greek Olives for your entire lifetime.
Choose a location that receives full or partial sun. An area that gets 6 hours or more sun per day is optimal. Make sure the location you choose is safe from strong winds, otherwise stake your young tree for protection.
Soil is ideal at a pH range of 5 to 8.5 and should drain well.
Loosen the soil in the planting area to make sure it drains well but do not add anything to the soil.
Dig your hole to easily accommodate the entire root system, place your tree in the hole and tamp to remove any air pockets.
Stake your young tree if possible to help its root system develop. Remove the stake after the tree’s trunk reaches a diameter of 1.25 inches.
Water your Greek Olive Tree thoroughly.
When your tree’s root system becomes established, your Greek Olive Tree will be extremely drought resistant. Until that time, water the young tree every third day for the first 2 weeks, then once every 2 weeks. After that, give your tree 1 inch of water per week for the first few months. Monitor your tree for necessary watering requirements from there.
Prune your Greek Olive Tree to the shape you desire. Prune towards the end of winter in mid-February and in the fall. Prune out low branches and tips of stems that have grown too long but if you are looking to harvest fruit keep in mind that olives bear fruit on the previous year’s growth.
Fertilize your Greek Olive Tree only after planting. Use a slow-release fertilizer to boost nitrogen by at least 10 percent.
Be sure to rinse any pruning tools prior to use to avoid spreading Olive Knot. This bacterial disease is prevalent during rainy months. The oils naturally produced in olives serve as a pest repellent. Olive Fruit Flies are typically found in the Mediterranean but have been encountered in some areas primarily on the west coast. There are commercial sprays and traps available to rid the tree of this pest.
- Plant your Greek Olive Tree away from sidewalks to avoid stains from fallen ripe fruit.
- You can grow your Olive Tree in a large container and shape it into a Bonsai