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By Liz2011

United Kingdom Gb

We live in the north east of England and have a sheltered south facing garden, normally despite how far north we live things do very well in our garden. I bought my husband a 45 year old olive tree 3 years ago which we've planted in the garden and we've had the 3 harshest winters I can remember in the last 3 winters! This year the olive didn't get any leaves until mid May and they're still very small and sparce. Apart from the cold winters (unavoidable) I suspect that we've planted the tree in the wrong location as that area of the garden can get waterlogged in winter. I don't know what to do - will moving it kill it? Can I do anything to help it? Please advise.



The difficulty with moving it after 3 years is it might have a very extensive root system which will be difficult to extract without significant damage. Even so, you're right, it will not like sitting in very damp soil all winter, so if you have somewhere else to put it that's more suitable, you could risk moving it in September. Otherwise, you're stuck with it where it is - it might just be the arctic conditions which have made it look the way it does rather than damp at the roots in winter - feeding now and keeping it watered in dry spells is all you can do.

14 Jun, 2011


Hi Liz,

I don't know if there's an optimum time for moving olives...but I moved two trees twice in summertime.

The first time was when they were struggling in a damp area with not enough sunlight. They shed what leaves they had after the move but recovered and were much happier.

A few years later, we were having the garden redesigned and the builders removed them, again, with little care and unceremoniously dumped them in two holes elsewhere (I wasn't there at the time!). I was very worried but they are still there and are fine.

Olives love terraced sunny hillsides, which can be pretty cold at times...but never wet or waterlogged. If it was mine I would move it, taking great care not to damage the rootball...but maybe wait until the autumn to be on the safe side.

14 Jun, 2011

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