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Edible Olives as a Hedge

Posted by bodhiroc Zone 10 (So Cal) (My Page) on
Mon, Dec 29, 08 at 4:29

Hi All- We just purchased a house and want to build a low wall with a hedge for privacy out front. At the same time, I'd like to have this hedge (and other things in our new garden) provide edibles.

We've decided we'd like to put in an edible (table-fruit, not oil) olive hedge. Does anyone have any advice for this? What varieties would make the best hedges? Pruning tips? Best to put in one variety, or multiple (pollinating) varieties?


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Edible Olives as a Hedge

We did a series of articles on olives: olive growing, varieties, and pruning in November 2008. You might want to look through these articles. Go to and then go to the November 2008 archive.

Here is a link to the article on varieties:

Here is a link to the article on olive pruning:

The short answer is you can't just pick olives from the tree and eat them, they must be cured before eating.

Pruning will not be a chore if you start early with your trees and stay with it year to year.

Here is a link that might be useful:

RE: Edible Olives as a Hedge

Thanks Stephen,

Are there any varieties that would make an especially good short hedge (4 ft?)


Ascolano and Manzanillo

Two commonly grown olives in my area (the Sonoma Valley) are Ascolano and Manzanillo. These are often pruned to that they top out not much taller than 10 feet. Call the local cooperative extension or Master Gardener program and ask for varieties popular in your more southern region. You are likely to find an enthusiastic olive growing community. You might also find a local olive press or olive oil cooperative and ask what members are growing in your area.

Olives can often be purchased as "multi-trunk" plants and these would make for the start of a hedge. But study up on pruning so that you understand how best to prune for harvest. If you want a decorative olive hedge "Wilsonii" is a non- to low-fruiting variety.

Here is a link that might be useful:

RE: Edible Olives as a Hedge

I am confused.

Can a person expect to keep olives to a 4' hedge AND get any fruit?

Wont you be constantly be trimming off the flowers, and therefore never have any fruit?

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