Black Olive, Standard

black olive

The humble Black Olive is an evergreen tree with tremendous religious and economic significance. Olive trees have a distinct, gnarled-looking central trunk. This feature makes it a popular addition to gardens. 

Fun Fact: There are surviving olive trees that are over 3,500 years old. 

Black Olive Plants are typically outdoor trees that are hardy and like hot climates. But if you can give it the right amount of TLC, it can survive indoors.

The tree has oblong leaves that are silvery-green in color which is why landscapers love the tree. It also has white, four-petaled flowers that grow in clumps. Even in containers, olive trees can reach 10 feet in height. So ensure you buy a dwarf variety if you have restricted space. 

If you’re growing a black olive tree to harvest the fruit, you need a ton of patience. The tree doesn’t start to bloom until it’s 4 years old. And the earliest first harvest happens only after the tree turns 15. If you want your tree to fruit, you will have to move your black olive house plant outdoors. 

Though caring for a black olive plant may be tricky for beginners, watching your plant grow is rewarding. 

Black Olive Plant Care

Light and Temperature Requirements – The Black Olive needs lots of bright sunlight. If you’re growing it indoors, keep it near a window that gets a lot of sunshine. But ensure that the leaves don’t touch the window as the contact heat can burn it. The ideal temperature for the tree is above 64°F. Temperatures below 40°F could kill your plant.

Soil Conditions – The best soil for the Black Olive is well-drained potting soil. But this tree can tolerate many soil types like clay or even sandy loam. The tree is also tolerant of varying pH levels. 

Water Requirements – Though it likes water, the olive is a drought-resistant plant. It is very easy to over-water olive plants in pots. So make sure the soil is dry before you water it. Don’t let the roots sit in water if you’re growing it in a pot. 

Food Requirements – During fall and winter, feed the tree once a month with a bonsai fertilizer. If you’re using a balanced houseplant fertilizer, use it at half-strength. In the spring and summer, feed the tree every other week.