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olives and strawbs


over the last couple of years i have tried growing more and more things. it's been a fairly trial and error approach but we've managed to grow and eat most of what we've planted.

the difficulty i've found is in the small details. there is always an amount of assumed knowledge in the information available. and thats where i have questions

there's a few things i'm unsure on. overwintering strawberries: i've grown new plans in containers from my bought plants. first time i've done this. i've taken off all dead leaves and weeded the pots. i've bought some straw and added it to the plants. i am unsure how much straw to add and whether to cover the plants or have the leaves poking through. the small new plants aren't big enough for this really. the last question i have is around where to put the containers. i have a small garden, no conservatory or greenhouse sadly. i do have a leaky garage which is in a block not next to the warmth of the house. i've read advice saying to dig the pots into the soil. and another to store in the garage under a towl. i am really lost where to put them and also when. some articles say if you do it too soon they will not be dormant and will try and grow. how such a simple thing becomes a minefield i'm not sure!

this week i've also bought a olea europea olive tree - bargain £6 as end of the season. i've got a new big container and compost at the ready but i'm not completely sure whether i can keep it outside in the winter. here in Bournemouth we rarely get snow but it does get frosty and cold like anywhere in the uk. do i need to cover it somehow? perhaps one of those fleece covers i've seen for plants? last question. the tree has quite of olives on it. mostly green. what do i do with these? if i take them off will they ripen so we can eat them? i tried eating a purple one but it was definately not ripe- was horrid! there was a great article on this tree on this site. it implies i need to cure the olives somehow. any ideas?!

well, quite a lot to read here - sorry. any help you can give me will be very greatly appreciated.

many thanks




  • MizzMizz Posts: 26



  • sotongeoffsotongeoff Posts: 9,802

    Oh you are in a muddle

    Strawberries are a hardy plant and don't need protection or straw at this stage-they also need a cold spell that generates flowers for next year

    Now you have yours in containers-that is fine -the only drawback is if the pot freezes and the roots freeze that will not help the plant-how big are the pots exactly?

    Can you not plant them in the garden?

    I hope someone can answer you olive question- I don't know-what does it say on the label ?

  • MizzMizz Posts: 26

    thanks for your reply

    yes, we are in a bit of a mess!

    the strabs are in various size containers from hanging basket sixe to 45cm pots. nearly all are plastic but one small pot is ceramic.have a small garden so the bed space is for our main veg crop. we've just harvested our root veg and last of the tomatoes etc but we'll be planting autumn garlic and onions in that space.

    the olive tree label gives very little information. is more about selling accompanying products (pots, compost, etc) and not care information.

    thanks for your help


  • sotongeoffsotongeoff Posts: 9,802

    I have an olive tree in a pot that stays out all year and I am in Southampton-but it is a short squat thing that has never borne fruit so is just ornamental

    I am stuck because yours has olives onimage

  • sotongeoffsotongeoff Posts: 9,802

    If you cant plant the strawberry plants out -then just protect the containers from freezing solid-just keep an eye on the forecast-if we get a prolonged cold spell get them under cover

    Forget about straw until they start fruiting

    They are not called strawberries after straw-actually it is a corruption of strayberries-because of the way that send out runners.

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  • Matty2Matty2 Posts: 4,817

    I would leave your olive out as Chrissie says against a warm wall. Last year I fleeced mine, left the fruit on them, wasn't sure if that was right or not. They did look like ghosts but stayed OK. As it is outside waht about bubble wrapping the pot as well oh and raise pot on a couple of bricks off the ground so that there is good drainage and it rain(water) doesn't accumulate in the pot.

    I have aweb link somewhere. I will send it you if I can find it - not very good on these things!!

  • Matty2Matty2 Posts: 4,817
  • WelshonionWelshonion Posts: 3,114

    In fact I would remove the straw.  It is only usually put round the plants as the fruit come to ripening to keep the strawberries clean.  If you have straw round the plants in the winter it may attract rot as it will hold the moisture, and it will certainly be a haven for slugs and snails.

  • I have had great crops of strawberries over the last 3 years. I usually cut them right back in September/October and the just leave them be. They have been covered in snow and practically frozen solid (northwest england) and still they survive and go on to fruit very well. image

    Sorry I don't know anything about olives image


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