What makes the olive tree so incredible? Well a huge portion of its popularity comes from the fruit itself. But we bet if you’re anything like us when we first got started in this business, that you would be shocked at just how phenomenal the olive tree really is.
Check out some of these fun olive tree facts here:
Olive Tree Growth has Inspired Innovative Growing Techniques.
Although the olive tree grows best in warm, arid environments, it is a misnomer that they can live with little to no water. However, places like Israel that are typically low on natural fresh water reserves have had to make up the difference utilizing modern technology. Through a special purification system, Israel utilizes both seawater and wastewater to irrigate huge portions of their olive crops. This not only allows for a greater reserve of irrigation water for farmers, but also provides for a unique assortment of nutrients not found in your typical fresh water supply—thus creating a world-class olive oil known across many continents for its superb flavor.
Olive Oil in Spain.
The Spanish Inquisition defined “cooking with olive oil instead of lard” as a sign that the inhabitants of that household was Jewish.
Olive Oil Not Just a Food.
Olive oil is not only a food, but it is also fuel. Before electricity olive oil was used to power oil lamps. This was true for both the ancients living before the time of Christ, and even later prior to Thomas Edison’s discovery of the lightbulb.
The Whole Tree has Purpose.
It’s not just the fruit that has value. Olive wood is known for a lush and variegated appearance. The wood is both beautiful and fragrant, and has been placed in palaces and even the original Temple in Jerusalem for decoration.
Processing Olive Oil Takes Time.
Once the olives are harvested there is a laborious process that must be undertaken in a short amount of time. Typically, the olive fruit is processed within the day that it is collected, but the process can take days to be completed following that initial first pressing. Surprisingly one olive tree can often produce up to 20 gallons of oil within just one year of its life.
Olive Trees Have an Incredible Lifespan.
Olive trees can live hundreds, even thousands of years. Many of the trees found in the Middle East date back before the time of Christ, even those found in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Is an Olive a Fruit or a Vegetable?
The olive is actually a fruit. They come in a variety of colors (purple, pink, brown) outside of the standard black and green found at your local market. All olives start out green, but change colors as they continue to ripen.
Olive Oil is Healthy.
Not only is it naturally sodium, carbohydrate, and cholesterol free, but olive oil also prolongs the shelf life of baked goods. When exchanged for butter the natural vitamin E and polyphenols found in the oil allow for a longer period before items go bad.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this little list of fun facts about the olive tree! It is an incredible gift to be able to plant these beautiful trees in the desert.
What a journey we’ve gone on to partner with the City of Jerusalem to make this happen! Through their generous support our trees are irrigated by the Israeli army through the irrigation system we mentioned earlier. Not only are we planting the trees. But we are investing in that first seven-year growing season that is so crucial in sustaining them into adulthood.
If you’d like to learn more about why My Olive Tree plants trees specifically in the land of Israel, please join us [HERE]!