Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Sweet Olive!

This diminutive shrub is not much to look at.  It does have a pleasant shape and is evergreen where I live, but there's nothing especially noteworthy about its looks.  It can make a nice hedge, but is a slow grower.  It will eventually get 15-20 feet tall.

The flowers are also hardly noteworthy.  You don't even see them unless you get up close and personal.  They're just not much to see.

What makes this plant so wonderfully worthy is that these small clusters of flowers will intoxicate you with their delectable fragrance.  The smell will waft through an entire yard.  People will burst through your door demanding to know where and what that sweet smell is coming from.  This fragrance is one of my favorite in the entire world.  My grandmother and my mom both had/have these in their yards and I remember the smell from earliest childhood.  This plant is somewhat tender to cold weather and might not make it well north of about zone 7b.  Otherwise, plant it in loamy soil in part shade or full sun.  It blooms fall through spring for me.  You've got to have this plant if you live where it can grow.  Imagine what a whole hedge of these would smell like!


meemsnyc said...

I've never heard of Sweet Olive. Looks interesting.

Mary said...

Sweet olives are great! They smell so good! I've got a very old one in my yard but its in poor health because someone planted it in shade. Its too big to move now, but it still puts on lots of flowers.

Wendy said...

interesting. I have no idea what that smells like. Wait, does this produce eating olives?

Anonymous said...

Sweet olive plants are my absolute favorite! The scent is amazing!