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How to grow olive trees

How to grow olive trees, concise and complete guide

Less than ~3 years trees



Less than ~10 years trees


Other pruning methods

olives_dome The one just described is the most common pruning method for olive trees in non superintensive plantations. Other methods like epsylon and christmap tree haven't shown advantages so have fallen out of favor.

The only valid alternative to the polyconic shape is the globe shape, although the polyconic shape can be tweaked to satisfy the properties of the globe shape by growing a thin dome of small branches stemming inward from the tip of the highest branches.

After ~10 years

This is the time around trees start to consistently yield good harvests. Pruning at this stage consists of

Thinning the canopy


Replacing main branches



How to perform cuts

When you prune, any choice boils down to performing cuts, the way you make them influences the tree, and since you can average hundreds of cuts per tree, all of them stack up. These rules are applicable to any tree in general, and not just olive trees.

Soil, Fertilizers, water and fruits


Olive trees are very resilient plants, but are light seekers . Overall it is easy to grow olive trees where there is a lot of sun and just enough water. The plants have natural methods to stem off diseases, and require attention against only 3 major pathologies (spots, rot and fly), while the rest can be considered minor. But it doesn't like harsh climates, it doesn't tolerate well temperatures below 0° and above 30°, too wet climates and too dry climates. Although growing olive trees is possible across a wide range of latitudes, it is only economically viable in subtropical regions.

fun fact

It was thought that growing cereals among olive trees was bad because the light reflecting properties of the ears would stress out the olive trees and therefore legumes were preferred. Legumes do indeed produce more nitrogen, which olive trees crave (on average more than other plants).

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