The olive tree is known for its beauty (Hosea 14:6) partially because its large ancient trunk often has the look of a productive past. Furthermore, one side of the tree’s leaves are light green and the other, a much lighter green, give the leaves a shimmering appearance.

Although olive trees rarely reach twenty feet high, their extensive root systems, which spread wide to obtain the adequate moisture in Israel?s relatively dry climate, require that the trees be planted some distance apart. Consequently, an average grove usually numbers a dozen trees or less.

Production and Harvest
An olive tree begins producing fruit at around ten years of age and reaches peak production after fifty years of age. Flower blossoms develop in the springtime; fruit appears during the summer and ripens in the fall.

Olive farmers harvest both the ripe and unripe olives for picking, eating, or, more likely, to be pressed for oil. The olives of Israel were (and are) known for their high oil content.


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