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Black olive trees are the latest must-have for homes after eagle-eyed interiors fans spotted a Bucida Buceras in pride of place in Gwyneth Paltrow's West Coast home.
The indoor tree came courtesy of influential interior designer Brigette Romanek of Romanek Design Studio, who designed Gwyneth Paltrow's Montecito home. However, we've seen these charming potted trees popping up in interiors schemes everywhere, and predict they're only going to become more popular.
Brigette often uses the best trees to grow in pots in her schemes, she believes that a black olive tree stands as a statement piece in a room – meaning everything else naturally falls into place.
'Everything connects,' she says. 'Take the tree. If you start with that, then everything around it has to be organic and soft in color, to enhance the tree's natural beauty. My goal is that anywhere the eye goes, you're able to enjoy something that is beautiful.'
Dom Butler, founder of London plant-sellers Plant Drop (opens in new tab) says demand for the tree has gone through the roof. 'The black olive has become so popular as it is the indoor plant that looks most like an outdoor tree, with its slender stem and small leaves, nothing else comes close.'
Why are black olive trees so in-demand?
'Olive trees add a sense of serenity and simplicity to any space, and their silvery-blue foliage goes well with a number of the modern white and black accents that are currently popular in houses,' says Tiffany Payne, director of marketing at Orangeries UK (opens in new tab).
You may need to order online, so always ensure it’s from a reputable online retailer with a good reputation for delivery. An olive tree is quite fragile and should be carefully protected in transit. So bear this in mind if you’re moving home too.
The black olive is a tall, slender attractive tree with fluttering soft green foliage – some people even compare the leaves to butterflies. It creates an inviting, natural atmosphere in a space.
It’s perfect for hallways or other areas where you would like to make a statement with your indoor garden ideas, and it can tolerate dry heat. Although this means it might not thrive in a bathroom, especially if there is not a great deal of natural light.
However, they do come with a high price tag, if you're hoping to purchase one expect to pay upwards of $600. Alternatively, you can pick up a more common smaller olive tree on Etsy for around $24 (opens in new tab), however, you won't get that beautifully sculptural trunk.
If you're hoping your black olive tree might bear fruit, you're likely to be disappointed. The Bucida Buceris doesn't actually produce olives, just a small black seed.
Even if you do invest in a standard potted olive tree, Tiffany points out that it takes a lot of expert attention to produce fruit. 'If you're hoping to press your homemade olive oil or plant some of the fruit next summer, you might be disappointed.'
Jayne Dowle is an award-winning gardening, homes and property writer who writes for publications including Sunday Times Home, Times Bricks & Mortar, Grand Designs, House Beautiful and The Spectator. She was awarded the Garden Journalist of the Year accolade at the Property Press Awards in 2021.
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