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How to choose olive trees

Dec 14, 2012 -
  How to choose olive trees
Mission olives (a dual purpose olive, good for both curing and oil) at Chaffin Orchards.

You can see it all now—it’s a sunny day and you’re sitting at a wooden table in your olive grove, eating olives and crusty bread, and drinking wine with your friends and family. You grew and cured those olives yourself.

The question is—WHICH olives?

Which olive trees will get prized positions in your olive grove?

It’s like growing any other edible—grow the flavors you like to eat.

You may already have favorite olives, or perhaps you’re from the school of All Olives Taste Great. If you have a chance, stop by your local deli or olive bar and do some sampling to point you in the right direction.

How to choose olive trees with our custom tools

Go to our Olive Trees page where we created tools to help you choose the right olive trees for your farm or garden.

1) Determine your USDA hardiness zone then choose your zone number in the sidebar under USDA Zone.

2) We sorted the olive trees by their primary purpose, although all the olives can be used for both curing and oil. Go to the Olive Uses tool. If you want to grow table olives to cure and eat, choose Table in the sidebar. If you want to press olive oil, choose Oil. Several of our olive trees are “dual purpose” and appear on both lists.

3) Olive trees are particularly attractive and have been a motif in art since ancient times. If you’re planning to use olive trees as edible landscaping, you’ll appreciate our tool that sorts the trees by growth habit. Within Olive Tree Habits, choose Upright for a tree that grows mostly upward, and Weeping for a tree that has drooping branches.

4) Olive trees will not be fruitful without the right pollination. Our Pollinated By tool shows you which olive trees work as pollinators for others. Some olive trees are self-pollinating, and our sorting tool will tell you that too. Would you like an introduction to fruit tree pollination? We have an article about pollination that explains the process.

With our tools you can easily choose olive trees that will thrive in your climate, produce crops for your culinary purposes—and look good doing it.

Categories: Fruit Trees, Olive Trees, Edible Landscaping

Lisa Avila Says:
Dec 17th, 2012 at 10:51 am

How to choose an olive tree.

Charlotte from Peaceful Valley Says:
Dec 17th, 2012 at 1:00 pm

Lisa, I am glad to answer any of your questions about olive trees.

Anita Oleksy Says:
Jan 9th, 2013 at 5:15 pm

Are “Russian Olives” edible?

Charlotte from Peaceful Valley Says:
Jan 10th, 2013 at 5:50 pm

Anita, Yes, “Russian olives” are edible. They aren’t really olives and are considered noxious weeds in many Western states.

Sgoff Says:
Nov 14th, 2013 at 5:45 am

I am in north central Louisiana. Zone 8. Are we too humid for olives?

Stephanie Brown Says:
Dec 19th, 2013 at 5:39 pm

Sgoff, You might have trouble if you have humid, wet springs since that will cause the olive tree to not set much fruit. Otherwise, it should be possible to grow an olive, you might have to protect it from frost when young though.

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