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Greece is not the only place to grow olive trees

We’re at Wilson Hall here on LSU’s main
campus, and today we’re looking at some gorgeous olive trees that are here and
are full of fruit. Olive trees are said to live about 300-600 years old, and
they’ve been in recorded history since 2500 B.C. in Greece. There are actually
trees that are still alive that are said to be over 2,000 years old at the Garden
of Gethsemane at the hill of the Mount of Olives. In fact, Gethsemane means ‘olive press.’ Olives are an important crop globally. Just think of all the olive oil
we use when we’re cooking and olives that we use that we eat, but it’s also
got interesting landscape features. This tree can grow about 20-25 feet, and it
spreads about 20-25 feet. It grows, obviously, in more arid climates but can
grow well in protected areas in Louisiana. In fact, there is a large crop
production in California, and it’s moved south, although in Louisiana we don’t
have large commercial production going on. But these can be grown here. They do
need some chilling hours. In order for you to get fruit, you need about 80 hours
of 30-42 degrees Fahrenheit in order to get a great fruit set. But this plant
can still be used as a screen as a shade tree in your yard. It is evergreen, and so
it will keep its leaves year round. So, it’s a great addition to any landscape.
For Get it Growing this is Heather Kirk- Ballard with the LSU AgCenter.

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