How to Grow an Olive Tree: Olive Trees in Container or Ground Read more at Suite101: How to Grow an Olive Tree: Olive Trees in Container or Ground ht

There is something deeply exotic about the olive plant, with its beautiful pale green leaves and versatile fruit. Grown in the Mediterranean for thousands of years, it is strongly associated with warm sun, gentle breezes, as well as ancient cultures rich in history and myth.

Yet the olive tree can be grown successfully in Britain, if given the right conditions and care and has, over the years, become increasingly popular. It is a small tree with attractive flowers and fruit, making it ideal for those with limited space.

Basic Conditions for Growing Olive Trees

An olive tree grown in the south of Britain will be able to survive most winters outside. However, it would be wise to ensure it is placed in a sunny spot, sheltered from the cold, winter winds. A patio, safe from the elements, or a south or south-west facing wall are the ideal situations.

Further north conditions can be much harsher in the winter. Because of these northern extremes, an olive tree is best grown in a container because this means it can be moved into a covered area for protection. Keep an eye on young olive trees which tend to be more vulnerable than older, more well-established trees.

Olive trees can be bought at varying heights, and the larger ones can be quite pricey. If economy is a factor, start out with a small tree in a plant pot as pictured above, and watch it grow (instructions below).

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