If this is your first visit, be sure to
check out the FAQ by clicking the
link above. You may have to register
before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages,
select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.
It is strange that the trees have not fruited. Do they have flowers in spring? Most olives are self pollinating but there are self-incompatable varities that need cross pollination. If there are other olive trees in the vicinity wind pollination should suffice but insects also help. Olives bear two types of flower, the staminate which only have male parts and will not set fruit and perfect flowers with anthers and pistils.
Have the trees been pruned yet? If not perhaps this spring would be a good time. Since olive trees do not go dormant wait until all chance of frost has passed and prune side shoots back by one third. Be careful not to prune the leader or top branches as this will stunt the upward growth and result in a lot of lateral growth turning it into more of a shrub than a tree. Olives need cool nights and warm days and can be vigorous growers. Fertilizing in spring may help flower production. Watering is quite easy. Being from the Mediterranean they are quite drought resistant. We tend to water once a week and the tree root is given a good soaking. Spraying the tree with water is not effective. Do not allow them to become waterlogged. Your trees are very young and will probably outlast many generations. Olive wood in the WFO is superb but don't rush them.
Olives can not be eaten straight from the tree because of the presence of glucosides. There are a lot of different ways to preserve olives but all require the removal of this. Green olives are produced by picking when fully grown but not ripe and black olives are picked later. A traditional method of preserving uses Lye. This is a caustic substance and although fast the olives need to be rinsed and further treated. Last year 'she who must be obeyed' soaked ours in a brine solution, changed every week, for three weeks. I believe the jars were also turned over regularily. The olives were then rinsed and drained, put back in the jars and covered with extra virgin olive oil and various herbs. A lot of Turkish women preserve them in brine.
For us this is more about 'the good life' than neccesity as we can choose from dozens of varieties in the local markets priced from £1 ($2) a kilo up.
George...............I decided that there were other things in life than the 'rat-race' so took early retirement and moved to Turkey. As far as being as being smart.........if that was the case I would have found Forno Bravo before I put in the oven..................