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How to Care for an Olive Tree

Olive trees are extremely beautiful and their popularity has been increasing over the past few years. Here is everything you need to know about how to grow and care for an olive tree.

How to care for an olive tree:

  • An olive tree needs lots of sun, if the tree is indoors, place it in a sunny south facing window where it can get full sun for at least 6 hours a day.
  • Olive trees can grow up to 10ft in containers, so you may want to choose a dwarf variety like the Olea Europaea.
  • Make sure to not over water your plant, and to let the soil dry out between waterings.
  • Since olive trees originated from the Mediterranean they are used to drier air and don’t need to be misted.
  • Don’t be afraid to slightly prune your tree if it is getting too big for the space it is in.
olive tree plant

How to plant your olive tree in a container:

  • Choose a well draining soil like cactus mix to plant your olive tree in.
  • Make sure your container has lots of drainage holes.
  • Plant your olive tree in a container that is much larger to allow your plant to grow, this also means you will have to replant less often.

Moving your olive tree outdoors:

If you are able to, planting your olive tree outdoors is very beneficial to the tree. It will allow it to live longer, grow larger and produce more fruit. Unfortunately, olive trees planted outdoors will only do well in zones 8 or warmer.

If you plan on keeping your olive tree as a houseplant, you can still move it outside during the warmer months of spring and summer. You will want to wait until the last frost has ended and then you can help acclimate it, and slowly expose it to more sun and wind after a few days of keeping it in a sheltered area outdoors. After about a week you can place your tree in full sunlight and leave it in that location until the weather starts to cool, then you will want to reverse the acclimation process by slowly bringing it back indoors.

olive tree pot

Here is how to plant your olive tree outdoors:

  1. Choose a spot in your garden that is able to get full sun.
  2. Add compost or other organic matter to help improve the drainage of your soil.
  3. Dig a hole that is twice the diameter of your tree and just as deep.
  4. Then you want to slide the tree out, carefully, and remove extra soil and loosen the roots, and then you can place it in the hole.
  5. Once a month during the spring and summer, feed the tree a balanced, granular fertilizer.

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