This blog is about growing tropical-looking plants in the Phoenix, Arizona area

March 10, 2014

Removing the growth at the base of an olive tree

The growth that appears at the base of your olive tree, technically called *suckers*, is perfectly normal. It's a sign of a healthy tree. And there are different opinions on what to do with this sucker growth. Some people let it turn into something that looks like a shrub and trim that neatly. Personally, I really like the sculptural quality of the base of the trunk of an olive tree, so I trim them away. This does take regular attention, and I have found an easy way to do it, using a simple hand chisel.

If you don't wait too long, this is pretty easy to do. Just snip the sucker growth off at the base, then use the chisel, gently, to smooth the surface of the trunk. The little wounds heal very quickly, and you are left with that beautiful, gnarly look at the base of the tree. If you do this regularly, the base of the trunk gets more interesting all of the time. A little bit of trouble, but to me, it's worth it.

Base of the trunk of an olive tree

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