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Olea europaea/Common Olive

Olea europaea / Olea europaea
Silvery-green foliage
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Silvery-green foliage


Close-up image of narrow leaves

An old lawn specimen tree in the Vatican Garden in Rome, Italy

Hollow trunk on olive tree in Vatican Garden, Rome, Italy

An avenue of olive trees in the Vatican Garden, Rome, Italy

Trunks of trees growing in the Vatican Gardens in Rome, Italy

A container-grown tree at a nursery on the Appian near Rome, Italy

Emerging flowers on olive trees in spring

Young spring foliage

Flower buds just before fruitset in early spring

Lower part of old, fruiting tree

An old, fruiting tree

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Scientific Name: Olea europaea
Common Name: Common Olive
Plant Type: Evergreen
Leaf Type: Broadleaf
Hardiness Zone: 9, 10, 11 Determine Your Zone
Height: 15-20 feet
Spread: 10 - 15 feet
Bloom time: Spring
Flower color: White
Fruit present: Summer, Fall
Fruit color: Green, Black
Light Exposure: Sun
Drainage: Dry
Rate of Growth: Slow
Water Requirement: Low
Maintenance Level: Low
Susceptible to insects
and diseases:
Landscape Categories:
Comments: The olive can be a single trunk tree or a multi-trunked shrub. It is tolerant of very dry soil and can tolerate relatively low temperatures once well established. The fruit is green during the summer and turns black when ripe. Fruit can be quite messy when trees grow over paved surfaces and in well maintained garden spaces. Gnarled, contorted trunks can be quite picturesque on mature trees. Normally associated with warm, dry climates.