Our Nursery

Located in the northern California wine country, The Olive Tree Nursery stocks a selection of olive tree varieties from Italy, Spain, France, and Greece. We also carry hard to find varieties and stock trees used for high-density orchards.

At our nursery we begin by propagating trees from cuttings. These cuttings are taken late-spring to mid-summer from healthy trees that are showing vigorous growth. Fresh cuttings are then sectioned into 4 inch lengths by making 90 degree cuts just below the bulging nodes and 45 degree cuts between the nodes, at the tapering tips. 2 to 4 leaves are left at the cuttingʼs tips to take in the moisture. Cuttings are then dipped in a rooting hormone and placed in propagation beds containing a rooting medium composed of 80% Perlite, 12% Vermiculite, and 8% Peat Moss.

The propagation beds receive bottom heat, and water is distributed intermittently by a timed mister system ensuring consistent moisture to the young cuttings. The amount of watering varies depending upon the heat, moisture, and air circulation in the greenhouse, but on average the water comes on every 8 minutes for 8 seconds. After a few weeks the cuttings are periodically checked for development of the adventitious roots.

At about 6-8 weeks we begin transplanting the rooted cuttings into a light compost-based soil mixture where they continue to root out until they are ready to go into one gallon pots. We then sell some of the trees as a one gallon size or continue to nurture the trees along, transplanting them next into 5 gallon pots, then 15 gallon, and finally 24 inch wooden boxes.

Some of the olive tree varieties that The Olive Tree Nursery propagate, grow, and stock include:

Italian Varieties

Frantoio - The drupe from this most popular Tuscan variety produces a spicy yet fruity oil, high in polyphenols and antioxidants.
Leccino - An early ripening Tuscan variety that produces a sweet and mellow oil when harvested at full ripeness.
Maurino - A pendulous tree and a good pollinator. A smallish drupe that produces a delicate and fruity oil.
Pendolino - Like Frantoio, an excellent pollinator for other Tuscan varieties. The tree has a pendulous habit, hence the name. Produces a mild and sweet oil.
Other Italian Varieties that are availble -
Coratina, Itrana and Moraiolo.


French Varieties

Cailletier (Nicoise)

Spanish Varieties

Arbequina - A smaller variety used primarily in high-density plantings. Comes into production at an early age with good yields. Makes a soft and buttery oil ideal for blending.
Arbosana - Like Arbequina, it is used primarily in high-density orchards. The drupe from this hardy variety produces a strong and fragrant oil.
Ascolano - This tree produces a large, roundish olive. The oil made from this variety makes a delicate and slightly sweet oil.
Manzanillo - A popular variety normally grown for table olives. Can be picked green or black. It also makes an exceptional oil which is mild and fruity.
Picual - The most widely planted Spanish variety. A cold hardy tree that makes a strong and spicy oil.
Sevillano - A popular table olive. Of large size and firm flesh. Not widely used for oil because of itʼs low oil content.

Greek Varieties

Kalamata - A longtime favorite and wonderful table olive which also makes a fine, delicate oil.
Koroneiki - Another popular high-density tree known for itʼs high removal force. Produces a quality oil that is both flavorful and pungent.
Also Available - Amfissa