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Olive trees are from the Mediterranean region, central Asia, tropical Asia, and parts of Africa. Their history is old and storied, and the olive branch is a symbol of a peace offering. It grows best in locations that have mild winters and long, dry summers that are warm. This allows them to grow their fruit.
You can use ericaceous compost for olive trees as they grow and produce fruit in a range of soils with a pH of 5.5 to 8.5. Ericaceous compost has a pH that ranges from 4.0 to 5.0, so it is slightly lower than what olive trees need, but they will grow in it. The important thing is to ensure that the soil has good drainage so that the trees don’t drown.
What Does an Olive Tree Need?
Olive trees are Mediterranean, and they are used to growing in hot, sunny weather. They are hardy, as they are grown on hillsides that have poor quality, rocky soil. They don’t require a lot of nutrients, but they do require good drainage.
They are popular because of their unique look, with gnarly stems and silverish green leaves. They add interest to gardens, and they produce flowers in the summer. They can grow as tall as 30 feet. They are adaptable and can grow in different climates, but they won’t produce olives if they don’t get enough heat and sun.
They can be grown in containers or planted in the ground, and they need as much sunlight as possible. The most important need they have is a well-draining soil. They can tolerate neutral, acidic, and alkaline soils, and if you have poor quality sandy soil, you will want to add compost.
In a pot, it is recommended to use multi-purpose compost and make sure that there are holes for drainage. They can go without water for long periods of time, and they can survive if they become dry. They respond well to pruning, but they can grow quite tall if you don’t prune them.
What Is the Best Compost for Olive Trees?
When olive trees are growing outdoors, they do best in well-drained soil. They do not need compost at all; it is recommended that you use a slow-release fertilizer instead to meet the tree’s nutritional needs. If you are growing olive trees in pots, you can use mixed compost with John Innes No 3, or you can use John Innes No 3 by itself. It creates a positive environment for growth in the long term.
The best soil for olive trees is a well-draining potting mix. There is plenty of room between the particles in the soil to make sure that it is never soggy. They suggest adding some organic matter when you are growing olive trees in pots and indoors. The mix should be equal parts sand, silt, and clay. The pH is ideal between 6 and 8, and you need to make sure that it isn’t a mix known for retaining water.
What Is the Ideal pH for Olive Trees?
The ideal pH for olive trees is between 6.5 and 8.0, but they will tolerate soil from 5.5 to 8.5. They are quite tolerant of acidic soil or alkaline soil. The main issue for olive trees is the drainage. They won’t do well if they become waterlogged. They prefer neutral over alkaline soils.
However, they will grow in acidic or alkaline soil. That means that you can grow olive trees in ericaceous compost, especially if the pH level of the soil is alkaline. The ericaceous compost will help lower the pH of the soil to a range that olive trees prefer.
At What pH Can Olive Trees Produce Fruits?
The pH level of the soil determines whether or not plants can produce fruit. Most of the time, the pH level needs to be within the plant’s target ideal range for this to happen. For olive trees, the range is from a low of 5.5 to a high of 8.5. They can handle a larger range of pH levels than other plants.
When you use ericaceous compost, it will lower the pH of the soil. That means that you can use it in more alkaline soils, and it will bring the pH level down to one that olive trees prefer. Although olive trees will tolerate alkaline soil, like hostas, they do better if it is slightly acidic to neutral.
How Does Ericaceous Compost Lower the pH of the Soil?
When you are planting olive trees, the first thing you need to do is test your soil to find out its pH level. You can get an at-home soil test kit and test the pH level yourself, or you can call your local county Extension office and have them do it for you.
If your soil is alkaline or has a high pH, you can lower it by adding ericaceous compost. Although ericaceous compost has a pH between 4 and 5, it can lower the pH of the soil to whatever is ideal for what you are growing. Since olive trees tolerate acidic soil, this is a great way to make the soil what you need it to be.
Ericaceous compost is similar to other types of compost, but acidic materials are added, such as pine needles or oak leaves. You can actually make it yourself at home. It is designed to lower the pH of the soil for plants that need it.
You can grow olive trees in ericaceous compost because they tolerate a range of conditions. They will bear fruit in soil that ranges from 5.5 to 8.5 on the pH scale. They are used to rocky sand with few nutrients, and the biggest factor in their care is making sure that they always have good drainage. They tolerate both acidic and alkaline soil, but they prefer neutral to slightly acidic. You can use ericaceous compost to lower the pH of the soil for the olive trees.