On May 23, 2017, Redwood Empire Bonsai Society (REBS) held its monthly meeting at the Luther Burbank Art & Garden Center, Santa Rosa, California, featuring members John Roehl, Ned Lycett and Ivan Lukrich on the subject of Olive (Olea europea) bonsai.
Specific Bonsai care guidelines for the Olive
Position: Place the Olive bonsai outside and at a sunny spot, this also helps to reduce the size of the leaves. Must be protected during the winter if temperatures get too low.
Watering: No specifics.
Feeding: Feed abundant, with a normal fertilizer monthly from spring to mid-autumn.
Pruning: Strong pruning is recommended in late winter. The olive will respond with vigorous growth in the following spring. For maintenance pruning, cut back to 2-3 pairs of leaves, and in very vigorous (and healthy) specimens you can use defoliation.
Repotting: Repot in spring before the buds begin to swell, every three or four years. Preferably use a bonsai mix with good drainage.
Propagation: From seeds and cuttings.
The olive is commonly found in Mediterranean countries, where it is a tree with strong symbolic importance. You can use cultivated varieties for bonsai (like the common olive) but it is often to use the wild olive (Olea europea silvestrys).
The wild olive is of greater interest for Bonsai as these develop tiny leaves. In many cases these possess much appreciated features like the presence of jin, shari and bark that indicate a high age and survival in hostile conditions. The Olive as bonsai is easy to care for and very strong so it is a suitable choice.
A medium sized Mediterranean tree which has been cultivated by men for thousands of years. Its trunks thicken very slowly, but the trees can become very old. The leaves are lanceolate Continue reading Demonstration on Olive Bonsai