Olive

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Livinhope

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Olive
« on: June 22, 2010, 12:31 »
This is something I hope someone is able to help me with.  Last year I bought a little olive tree it was supposed to be able to withstand the southern English winter temperatures.  As it was rather extreme it died.  I sent for some olive seeds and without much hope planted them.  I have just discovered that one has germinated.  Is there anyone out there who can give me good advice so that my baby doesn't succumb this year.

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Wild Pony

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Re: Olive
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2010, 13:18 »
I have no idea, but maybe emailing somewhere that does "foreign" plants like Heligan or Eden Project for advice, I know their head gardeners are a wealth of knowledge.
Nothing ventured.......

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Jamie Butterworth

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Re: Olive
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2010, 14:44 »
Gardeners world are offering a free olive tree for readers, ive posted a link in the frugal living section :)
If you want to be happy for a short time - get drunk.

If you want to be happy for a long time - fall in love.

If you want to be happy forever - take up gardening!

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Livinhope

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Re: Olive
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2010, 14:52 »
I've got the seedling, and hopefully more to follow I just need to know how to ensure it's survival.

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catllar

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Re: Olive
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2010, 16:26 »
Judging from how they grow here in the wild (and in my garden) it would seem keep'em well drained as they hate wet feet , frost free, but not heated and planted shallow. Good luck!

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tosca100

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Re: Olive
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2010, 16:46 »
Mine's in a pot in the garden, we've had it 4 years and it came through last winter really well. We rarely water it, unless it gets some when other pots are watered.

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Livinhope

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Re: Olive
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2010, 17:37 »
I've seen them growing rampant in Tuscany, just seeding and growing everywhere and they don't seem to mind being totally thirsty.  The one that has germinated hasn't been watered for some time because I had given up on them and thought they had rotted or just not done anything.  I think I may bring it (them) into the conservatory (unheated) for the winter.

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Yorkie

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Re: Olive
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2010, 18:30 »
I think they are generally frost hardy, but hate cold wet conditions - well drained is one key.

Don't know whether the rhs has a fact sheet on growing olives?
I try to take one day at a time, but sometimes several days all attack me at once...

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New shoot

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Re: Olive
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2010, 20:21 »
Most of the olives you see for sale here are from the plant nurseries in Tuscany, but some do come from Spain and these are less hardy breeds.  Tuscany gets very cold in the winter but it's also pretty dry and that's the main difference to why they survive or not. The smaller the tree, the less able they are to cope with our winters. 

They need somewhere sheltered and to be kept on the dry side over winter. An unheated conservatory would be ideal but spray the plant well before you bring it in just in case it has picked up red spider mite or other nasties.

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Livinhope

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Re: Olive
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2010, 21:54 »
The one I lost came from Tuscany, that's why I  bought it.  It was about a foot high but  think the winter was too severe.

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mobilekat

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Re: Olive
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2010, 08:40 »
I just about kept mine alive over the winter, but its nearly 2 foot tall and has only 20 leaves- its the scruffyest plant ever, have repotted it, it a better draining pot, and talked too it, and am hoping it will improve- just got to stop my OH enthusiastically watering it as he feels sorry for it!
Very often quite lost- would be more lost if I could work out where I was!- But always find my way home.....

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Snoop

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Re: Olive
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2010, 13:15 »
Olive trees are incredibly hardy. You should easily be able to keep them alive in the south of the UK. I imagine the reason why they do badly is because they're kept in pots, which is less than ideal. People don't generally grow oaks, ash or walnut trees in pots. An olive tree needs the same kind of attention as you'd give any other 'proper' tree.

Put them in the ground in a sunny spot that's not too windy, support as you would a fruit tree and mulch in the winter. Give a good dollop of muck or nitrogen-fertiliser in the spring. If you have weeks on end of rain, dust or spray with a little copper sulphate to ensure the leaves don't become diseased.

I don't think cold is a problem so much as a lack of sunshine.  Where we are, night time temps reach minus 13C and stay that way for weeks on end. The trees don't mind. I don't know what kind of olive trees are sold in the UK. Our local ones are Empeltre. There are all kinds of different types but even the ones that grow in the south of Spain survive perfectly well here.

Like any young tree, they will need watering a bit. The local recommendation here is 10 litres per week, given all in one go. That, of course, is for trees in the ground. In the UK, less would be required, I guess.

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catllar

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Re: Olive
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2010, 21:23 »
Hey Snoop, your watering recommendations are way different from what our nursery told us - mind you I guess it depends on the tree age when you get it. I planted a 300yr old one and was told it needed - wait for it - 100 litres (all in one go) once at end June and once again end of August! To be honest it gets what it's given and is doing just fine! I was also told not to feed it, so I don't!

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catllar

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Re: Olive
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2010, 21:25 »
Oops, just re-read your post, Snoop, sorry! You said "young tree" Doh....

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mobilekat

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Re: Olive
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2010, 21:36 »
I think what got mine wash the pot that I bought it in was awful- not enough holes and very waterlogged, but as it was fresh repotted when I had bought it I had left it alone and was waiting for roots to appear!

And then was frustrated when it looked so poor, its brightening up now, so fingers crossed.

we are mostly lucky with our climate, but we are on the edge of the moor, so do get some interesting cold winds!



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