Olive Tree – Olea europaea 2

I have just been bought a standard olive tree (Olea europaea) for my birthday from my sister. I have always wanted an olive tree so I’m really pleased.

The Olive originally comes from the Mediterranean so are used to dry, hot conditions and not really suited to the UK climate.

I’m going to move mine into a large, decorative pot and keep it in my conservatory for the winter. When the weather warms up I’ll take it outside and let it sit on my south facing patio for the summer, bringing it indoors again next October.

The Olive Tree is an attractive, slow-growing evergreen tree originally from the Mediterranean and therefore tolerant of dry, hot conditions. Also, it can reach an age of more than 2000 years!

It forms a neat, rounded shaped tree with a dense spreading crown of silver-grey leaves and tiny, lightly scented white flowers in the summer. The small round green fruit ripen to black later in the year and are edible.

In the UK the Olive is not fully hardy so need a warm, sheltered spot to survive the winter. Alternatively they can be grown in a large pot and moved into a cool greenhouse or conservatory for the winter months.

Care Instructions: The Olive needs to be watered regularly and fed during the growing period. Prune long sprouts in Spring and July to maintain a good shape. Add organic matter to the soil surface after pruning.

Common Name  Olive
Genus  Olea
Species  europaea
Skill Level  Experienced
Exposure  Full sun
Hardiness  Half Hardy
Soil type  Well-drained/light, Dry, Sandy
Max Height  1000cm
Max Spread  1000cm


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2 thoughts on “Olive Tree – Olea europaea

  • sam

    I bought an olea europaea about three months ago i tried not to water it to much as i know they would rather be thirsty than over hydrated over the last couple of days the leaves have been falling off and im starting to think its dying or dead if it is im gutted im only starting to garden and i need small plants as i live in a flat i know they need expert care but i thought i would give it that. I have checked and there are no new leaves! could you please advise?

  • Linda Post author

    Hello, thank you for your comment; I have also replied via email which may be easier for you.

    The first thing you need to do is to check whether it is dead or not. Gently scrape away the bark of a few of the branches, if it is green underneath then the plant is alive, if it is brown then I’m afraid it is dead.

    If it is dead I would take it back to where you bought it and ask for a refund or a new plant, many places offer guarantees on plants.

    If it is alive then hopefully with a little TLC it will recover by next spring/summer but first of all can you let me know the following:
    • Is the plant being kept outdoors or indoors?
    • Is the plant in a pot or in the ground?
    • If it is in the ground can you let me know a bit about the location such as soil type, amount of sun, whether it’s very windy etc.

    Once I have your reply I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.