How are black olives grown?

In addition to using black olives in sandwiches and pizza, many people appreciate the flavor of black olives. The idea of growing your black olives at home may seem like a simple method to assure that you and your family always have what you need.

Black olives cannot be grown outside in many parts of the United States. When olive trees are adequately cared for, they flourish in California and Arizona’s Sonoran Desert. A greenhouse will allow you to cultivate black olives regardless of your location. 

To plant them, follow these steps:

  1. When planting an olive tree, dig a hole the same size as its container. From 4-inch pots, 18 to 24 inches tall, olive trees may reach heights of 1-gallon pot that is 4 to 5 feet tall. Remove the olive tree from its container and check the roots. Remove any that have become tangled or twisted.
  2. Fill up the hole with an olive tree. Don’t add peat moss, special fertilizers, or other dirt to the original soil. Trees should have space around 20 feet apart when planted in groups.
  3. Weed around the olive trees monthly throughout the first two or three years of their life, if not more. Within three feet of the olive trees, weeds have to be avoided.
  4. The trunks of the trees should be far enough away from the sprinklers so that they don’t get wet, yet near enough to collect water from the soil. The trees should be irrigated at least twice a week, but more often if the weather is scorching. For olive trees to thrive, they need roughly four inches of watering.
  5. Typically, it takes four years for an olive tree to produce olives. Only when they turn black will you know the olives are fully grown.