Olive Helena

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The closest thing to a native olive! The variety has been grown on St Helena Island, Moreton Bay since the 1800s and oil was even exported back to Italy. The images also show a postcard from the Superintendent of St Helena regarding making olive oil; and a letter from the prison governor forwarding a bottle of olive oil (once they cracked the technique!)

Tree is fast-growing, tall and more slender than other olives, and good for sub-tropical regions as it will flower and fruit without any cold period. Darker leaves - see 5th image with Manzanillo (L) and Helena (R)

Read more on the fascinating history of the St Helena olive ; and olive cultivation tips at Better Homes & Gardens

Olea europaea 'Helena' - olive

APPEARANCE : Mediterranean tree with tall crown, oval dark bottle green leaves, self-pollinating flowers and small green oval fruits rich in oil. Thought to be Frantoio variety. Was grown on St Helena high security penal colony, Moreton Bay, from 1800s, and the oil made from the fruits won Australia's first agricultural medal.
USE IN : Shade tree, fruit tree, foliage plant.  Suitable for large pots.
CLIMATE : Hardy shrub suited to most conditions nationwide especially frost-free locations, and coastal plantings.  Appears not to need a cold period to initiate fruits,. Will tolerate frost when mature.
PLANTING : Plant in a free draining soil rich in organic matter, in full sun to part shade. Perfect for sandy areas and poor soil.
CARE : Easy if the climate is right for it. Mulch and water well during the first 12 weeks until the plant is established, prune after flowering to promote new growth and encourage bushiness not spindliness. For container-grown olives, repot if necessary during the growing season.
MATURE HEIGHT & WIDTH : 6-9 m H x 3 m W.
YOUR PLANTS : These are tubestock plants, healthy young plants with new roots that will establish quickly in your garden. The pot size is 80mm high and 42 mm wide.
You can see an example in the image gallery.
What is tubestock?

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