Indoor Olive Trees are Trending

According to home design experts, the botanical must-have for 2017 is an indoor olive tree. This year potted olive trees will be making an entrance into stylish homes around the world, pushing out the passé fiddle leaf fig.

Feb. 21, 2017
By Julie Al-Zoubi

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The big names in inte­rior design agree that olive trees should be allowed to take root inside our homes this year.

Joanna Gaines, a host of HGTV’s pop­u­lar Fixer Upper pro­gram, is a huge advo­cate of bring­ing the olive tree inside. If Gaines were to pop-in on you, she’d more than likely turn up with a pot­ted olive tree than a bunch of flow­ers. According to Gaines, you can add a lit­tle farm­house charm to any room with an indoor olive tree.

American inte­rior designer Nate Berkus has embraced the trend for indoor olive trees for quite a while. Berkus’s part­ner, Jeremiah Brent (also a designer) idol­izes trees as house­plants. The couple’s Los Angeles home is awash with olive trees in old Indonesian pots. Prior to mov­ing to Los Angeles; Berkus’s New York apart­ment housed an olive tree on an occa­sional table.

English archi­tect Ian Simpson is another devo­tee of the indoor olive tree. Simpson wel­comed olive trees in his home well before the cur­rent trend began. The archi­tect cre­ated an indoor gar­den in his Manchester pent­house apart­ment and graced it with 30 olive trees imported from Tuscany.

Richard Brunton, art direc­tor at NZ House & Garden mag­a­zine is enthu­si­as­tic about the trend for indoor olive trees. I really like the sound of it. It has quite a Mediterranean look and could be very inter­est­ing in the right space. An olive tree would look won­der­ful in a home that has a Mediterranean theme or Tuscan decor. They can also be a great option for fill­ing the gaps in a room with lim­ited fur­nish­ings,” he said.

Olive trees are also spurt­ing up in chic hotels and trendy restau­rants around the world. Guests at The Four Seasons Hotel in Bahrain Bay are wel­comed by eight 200-year-old olive trees that adorn the hotel’s lobby. In the UK, Gusto new Nottingham restau­rant is decked out with indoor olive trees.

As well as bring­ing a bit of nature into your home, olive trees cre­ate a relaxed, calm­ing envi­ron­ment and may boost your cre­ativ­ity. Aristotle accred­ited his great­est think­ing to being among olive trees. Vincent Van Gogh claimed that he found pro­found learn­ing in olive trees, which he believed housed a sacred force.

Dwarf vari­eties of olive trees are best for inte­ri­ors unless your home is large with tall ceil­ings. Even dwarf vari­eties can reach a height of around 6 feet. To thrive indoors an olive tree requires around six hours of sun­light each day. Olive trees flour­ish best near south-fac­ing win­dows.

Olive trees add an inter­est­ing twist to home decor trends. Potted olive trees make adapt­able, low main­te­nance house plants, but don’t expect a bumper crop of olives; most pot­ted olive trees won’t bear fruit. Olive trees that may pro­duce fruit indoors are the Arbequina, a slow grow­ing weep­ing” olive tree, and the Picholine.


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