Every now and then at My Olive Tree we get some questions about how our trees are grown or about the process of growing and harvesting olives in general. Here are a few of the ones that are most commonly asked:
Q: Do you grow green or black olives?
It’s a common misconception that green and black olives are different types of fruits. In actuality, whether an olive is green or black merely depends on how ripe it is. All olives that are left on a tree will eventually ripen to be black. However, olives can be harvested and pickled at any stage of their ripeness. Green olives are picked when the juice inside begins to turn from clear to milky. Olives used for oil are left until there is some additional color change. Black olives are either ripened while still on the tree or picked and then turned black during processing.
Q: How long does it take for a tree to bear fruit?
It depends on the type of tree and whether it was grown from a cutting or a seed. Some trees fruit at an early age, being just a couple years old. Others can take five
to twelve years to bear fruit. Cuttings generally produce fruit quicker than trees grown from seeds, which might not ever actually grow fruit.
Q: How much fruit comes from a single tree?
Again, this depends on the variety of tree, but smaller trees usually bear around 30 or 40 pounds of fruit when mature, and larger trees can produce up to 100 pounds of fruit within a season. One giant species of olive tree called the Chemlali produces almost a ton of fruit in a single year!
Q: Do olive trees need to be kept dry?
No. Though olive trees are very hardy and resistant to droughts, they do need a moist soil. Trees that don’t get enough water might not bear fruit or reach their full growth potential. This is why My Olive Tree invests in irrigation for our groves to ensure fruitful and profitable harvests. Even before the trees are planted irrigation lines are run and waiting!
Do you have any other questions about growing olive trees? If so, reach out to us at My Olive Tree today and we’ll be happy to answer them!