Growing Olives From Seed

How are seedlings grown from olive seeds?

Growing olives from seeds is promoted by assisting nature to break the

hard shell. This can be done by pinching carefully with ordinary wire

pliers until the shell cracks without injury to the kernel, or the shell

may be cut into with a file, making a very small aperture to admit

moisture. The French have specially contrived pliers with a stop which

admits cracking and prevents crushing. Olive seeds in their natural

condition germinate slowly and irregularly. They must be kept moist and

planted about an inch deep in sandy loam, covering with chaff or litter

to prevent drying of the surface. Before experimenting with olive pits,

crack a few to see if they have good plump kernels. Seedling olives must

be grafted, of course, to be sure of getting the variety you want. For

this reason growth from cuttings is almost universal.

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