Olives in various stages of ripening.
Olives in various stages of ripening. Dainela

Create your own olive grove

Olive trees, with their attractive greyish foliage, can be successfully grown in backyards as well as in a large pot in a sunny courtyard.

They're hardy, dry-tolerant plants that grow well in cool to temperate climates. Salads, pizza, tapenade, pasta and breads are just a few delicious ways to enjoy olives, which are usually harvested in autumn.

Different varieties are suited to different uses, such as Manzanillo for pickling, Kalamata for eating fresh and cooking and Frantolo for oil, and also for different climates, so pick a variety suitable for your area (and your favourite recipe).

Also check your chosen olive to see if it will produce a better crop if cross- pollinated with another olive, with trees taking four to five years to bear fruit.

When planting a new olive tree, mix some Dynamic Lifter into the planting hole and keep the soil moist while the olive establishes. Reapply every spring and autumn to encourage healthy growth and lots of olives.

Soil tip: olives prefer a slightly alkaline soil (pH 7 - 8). In areas with acidic soil, apply some liquid lime and dolomite around the root zone to increase the pH.