Indoor Olive Tree: Can It Happen?

Indoor plants are one of your greatest gifts as humans. While wild animals get to enjoy nature in their homes, we as humans, do not naturally get to. But what we can do is bring nature indoors to give us life.

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Literally, as we need plants just as much as they need us. Perhaps even more so. One of the greatest new indoor plant trends is the indoor olive tree. Today, we’re going to find out everything you need to know to care for one.

If olive trees aren’t your jam, then perhaps you’d be interested in one of our other indoor tree recommendations. They are all wonderful trees with different benefits to offer your home and your health. 

Can You Grow An Olive Tree Inside?

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Image from @clairegarnerinteriors

The short answer is that yes, you can grow olive trees indoors. Indoor olive trees are becoming quite popular lately and with good reason. They have the ability to produce fruit, they smell good, and they have a nice aesthetic. 

But before you decide to grow your olive tree indoors, it’s important to learn all you can about doing so. It’s important to always learn about a few key things when choosing a plant: water, sunlight, and soil. 

But there are also other things to keep in mind that are meant for olive trees in particular. So let’s learn what we can about these magical trees so we know how to best care for them should we decide to get then for our homes.

Meaning Of The Olive Tree

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Image from @alfrescoemporium

The olive tree has a different meaning in different cultures, but the Greek culture’s take on the olive tree is probably the most popular. In short, an olive tree stands for peace. Which is something we all need right now.

But that isn’t all the olive tree stands for. The olive branch itself is a sign of friendship, a truce, of better days ahead. But it isn’t just this sign of peace that the olive tree signifies, but these others as well.

Prosperity, Fertility, Success

At one time, the only prize that an Olympic winner received was a wreath made of olive branches. It was said to be a sign of success and prosperity. These wreaths were called “kotinos” and are still symbolized today. 

There are many trees and plants that symbolize prosperity, but the olive tree is probably the oldest of them all. They also stand for fertility and longevity because they can live to be over 1000 years old. 

Wisdom And Immortality 

The olive branch is also often seen as a sign of immortality and wisdom. In Greek mythology, it was made to signify a contest between two gods, Athena and Poseidon. Athena was the warrior, the Goddess of Justice. 

Poseidon, her uncle created a well of water to which Athena showed her own power by sprouting an olive tree. This created a competition between the two, and Zeus ended up choosing the greater gift, the olive tree. 

Renaissance And Light 

As Noah witnessed in the Christian Bible, the dove brought him an olive branch as a sign that the flood was over, that dry land was nearby. The olive branch is often seen as a gift from the gods, bringing light wherever it goes.

You don’t have to be an expert in any religion, mythology, or botany to know that olive trees are special. But now that you do know, it may be difficult to ignore your need for one little indoor olive tree.


Want to make a new friend? Perhaps an olive tree is a good gift, as long as they have other indoor plants and know how to care for them. Because an olive tree is often seen as a sign of friendship, and the offering thereof. 

Haven’t you ever heard the term, offering an olive branch? That’s because it is used as a peace offering. The need to end an argument and become friends once again. It means you’re trying to find peace for the betterment of everyone. 

How Much Sun Does An Indoor Olive Tree Need?

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Image from @suesimpsonfennell

Though it can vary, it is recommended that olive trees get a minimum of 6 hours of sunlight each day. So it’s important to ensure that these trees are placed near a window that gets that much sunshine. 

Too much sun won’t hurt the olive tree unless you live in a very hot climate. Otherwise, the olive tree will do quite well with up to 10 hours of sunlight each day, with a few hours of direct sunlight assured.

You don’t want to place these trees in the full shade because the sunshine is super important to their well-being. But being out in desert heat will also not do them well. Instead, opt for the appropriate sunlight. 

Fertilizer And Soil For An Olive Tree

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Image from @leestonhouse

It is important that the olive tree planted indoors has well-drained soil. Do not use soil that is well-packed or clay-like soil. The soil should be fairly loose but not so loose that the olive tree cannot stand. 

Rocks can be placed in the soil and can actually help it stay loose. Small rocks only, however as you don’t want to block any roots. When it comes to fertilizer, there is an easy-to-remember concoction you can use.

Most olive trees thrive on a 16-16-16 nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium ratio. Though this isn’t strict, it’s a good way to remember a good balance. Remember, it can vary, but this is a good base for your olive tree. 

Watering An Indoor Olive Tree

Watering An Indoor Olive TreeView in gallery
Image from @cheringtonhouse

Water is important for every single plant. Some can drown with too much water while others will dry out if they don’t get enough. Olive trees stand somewhere in the middle, depending on how young they are.

Young olive trees should be watered every day lightly before switching to watering every few days. If you can get a drip going then you only have to check on the tree and refill the trip tank. Just place the drip deep.

After the tree is a few weeks old and doing well, then go to a weekly watering. You can overwater olive trees so unless they are babies, stick to once a week, ensuring that you give at least one inch of water each time. 

In the winter, you should stop watering the tree altogether and then back to normal again in the spring. This can vary but for most climates, this is your general watering routine. Yes, it is very light and easy. 

How Big Do Indoor Olive Trees Get?

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Image from @lola_amuah

Unfortunately, an olive tree cannot spend its entire life indoors. It can live there for a few years, but after a while, it needs room to grow and thrive. When this happens, you’ll need to take it outdoors and get a baby olive tree.

Dwarf olive trees are a better option if you want to keep it inside longer. But even then, it’s better to let them outdoors whenever they are an adult. Indoors, they can reach around ten feet if your ceilings are high enough.

But it also depends on your container. Ensure that your container is big enough to not stint the growth of the olive tree. Always make sure that it is at least twice as large as the root ball at all times for best results. 

Fruit-Bearing Vs. Non-Fruit-Bearing Olive Trees

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Image from @my_house_on_abbey_road

This is something that you won’t learn about at most nurseries with people trying to sell you an olive tree. But there are two types of olive trees, fruit-bearing olive trees, and non-fruit-bearing olive trees. 

While non-fruit-bearing olive trees aren’t all that common outdoors, they are fairly common indoors. These are actually two different species, what you want is probably the fruit-bearing olive tree, the classic olive tree.

If you want to see the differences between the two, look up the different types of olive trees and why to choose each one. But if you are in it for the olives, then choose a fruit-bearing olive tree, there are many types of those as well.

Faux Olive Trees

If this is all a little much for you, then consider a faux olive tree. Faix olive trees look just like real olive trees only they don’t take any of the hard work. They are sit and forget trees because they are fake. 

Faux olive trees are fairly inexpensive too. You can get them for less than $100 at many different home decor stores and they look as pretty as a picture. The style is all up to you as well as the tree won’t change. 

You can get imperfect trees that have a lot of character or symmetrical trees that go perfectly with your modern design. There’s nothing wrong with wanting a faux olive tree either because they are simply another decoration. 

Either way, you can have that gorgeous olive tree with the amazing backstory behind it in your home. So choose whichever works best for your lifestyle, whether it be the lush real olive tree or the easy faux olive tree.