Manzanillo olive tree finally flowering - fantastic news!

Mark

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It has been 7 years since I planted my Manzanillo olive trees x 2 in my backyard and I can say with absolute excitement and relief one has finally got buds all over!

Over the years, I've been politely told by several people "olives won't fruit in a subtropical climate" but patiently I have maintained my faith that one day it would happen... YES! :cheer:

We got one Manzanillo olive tree from a friend as a house warming present and I decided to buy a second one to have a pair. At the time, my research about growing olives in my area/climate found non-committal sketchy info stating Manzanillo olive trees have a better chance of fruiting in warm climates. I am yet to find or know of anyone who is successfully growing olives in my immediate area - Surely there must be someone?

Manzanillo Olive Buds :chuffed:
Manzanillo olive flower buds.jpg


Manzanillo olives have a medium to large type fruit which is appealing because a small olive with a large seed can be annoying.

I have 5 other olive trees Helena, Kalamata, and Arbequina. I planted the Helenas a few years after the Manzanillos and the Argequina have been in the ground for only about two years.

The Helena trees are original stock taken from mother plants on St Helena Island (directly off the eastern coast of Brisbane). I figured if they grew and fruited there only 45 kms south from my place then the chances are they will fruit here - they haven't yet and it's been 5 years. The trees are huge but...

The Kalamata olive tree I got on special from a nursery as it looked a little worse for wear. It's about 4 years old and is growing poorly and from what I have read will probably never fruit in my climate anyway. I'll give it until it dies or few more years before I yank it out.

The Argequina trees originated from Spain and are renowned as an early fruiting variety with the added claim or bonus of being very low chill meaning it doesn't need much of a cold winter to flower. I found this to be true with my two young Argequina flowering in the first year of planting (and flowering again this season). The only downfall is the relatively small size of the olive fruit but still it would have done if no other olive trees fruited, which I am pleased to say is not the case.

Anyway, my Manzanillo is flowering so I've got my fingers crossed the fruit will follow and be a nice big juicy size worthy of making my very own herb infused delicacy. :)
 

Steve

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Sounds like olives are fairly tough to grow in SEQ but kudos for having a go.
When I was buying my citrus from a nursery I noticed heaps of olive trees on special (not sure on their type). I figured one day I would be back for one but that won't be anytime soon.

Congrats on getting it to flower. Looking forward to hearing more good news on this thread. Out of interest, how big are the trees now? Maybe a photo?
 

Mark

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Here's a few more shots of my olives the Helena and Manzanillo the images aren't very good sorry.

You can see the size difference between the much larger and tree shape Helena compared to the smaller bush-like Manzanillo. The Manzanillo trees are 2-3 years older than the Helena.

helena olive and manzanello 800.jpg


This is my Manzanillo flower buds. I can't get a full shot in view because the buds are so small they are too hard to see against the foliage. My other Manzanillo (in the orchard) has a few buds but it isn't covered so I expect it will flower fully next year - it must be just slightly behind the other one in maturity.

buds before flowering manzanello olive 800.jpg


I have just released a small article about my Manzanillo flowering on my blog for any who is interested: http://www.selfsufficientme.com/blo...subtropical_climate__with_a_mild_winter___yes
 

Mark

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Here's the fruit starting to form - it will take a good few months before the olives are ready to pick green and quite a bit longer if wanting them black.

manzanillo olives starting to grow.jpg
 

Mark

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Just an update on my flowering manzanillo olive tree, unfortunately it's bad news as few olives have survived long enough to grow to maturity. It seems many of the flowers didn't form fruit and for some reason most of the fruit that did form was either shed or eaten as they mysteriously disappeared from the tree :cry2:

Alas, I'll have to wait again for next season and hope to finally get a harvest one day...

Here is a pic of one olive (out of about 10) that actually survived.

[photo]153[/photo]
 

Mark

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