If your home is your haven where you relax, slow down, and unwind, then you need an artificial olive tree in your home. Olive trees embody warmth and a slower pace of life you expect from the Mediterranean. Olives have long been a symbol of peace and tranquillity, so they are the perfect addition to any space where relaxation is the goal.
The olive tree has become a huge trend over the past year and it’s only going to become more popular in 2022. Unlike many other houseplant trends, this trend isn’t being led by those magical people who have the time and skill to keep live houseplants alive - olive trees are notoriously difficult to grow here in the UK and are a true tree, so even if you do keep your home at a tropical climate, it will grow so fast you’ll no longer have the space for it in just a few years. Even plant lovers go faux when embracing this trend.
To help you make the most of this trend and find the right artificial olive tree for your home, we’ve put together the complete guide to buying artificial olive trees so you don’t have to second-guess yourself. Read on to learn everything you need to know!
Why Faux Olive Trees Are Best
If you’re already sold on the idea of choosing a fake artificial olive tree then you can go ahead and skip this section, but if you’re still on the fence, here are some of the reasons why faux is best in this case.
- Olive trees need a lot of light, after all, they grow in the hot, dry, sunny climates of the Mediterranean. To be in with a chance of growing them well in the UK, you’ve got to be able to place them in the area of your home or garden that’s a sun-trap - that place where it’s too hot to sit on summer days. Most of us don’t arrange our homes around the plants we use to decorate them, so unless you’re looking for a plant for the sunniest spot in your home, your live olive tree will fail to thrive, or even die.
- Live olive trees are too expensive to risk killing them. Unless you’re planning to buy a very small olive tree, you’ll need to think about setting aside more than £40 just to get one that’s a couple of feet tall. If you want one that’s tall and mature, prices can be as high as £400.
- Live olive trees won’t necessarily grow in the way you want. One of the best things about artificial olive trees is they’ll fit in those small spaces in your home and add the touch of nature you need, while a live tree will grow out and toward any source of light. Sure, you can prune a tree to try and keep it small, but if you want to keep it in a place where it’s not thriving, pruning it certainly won’t do it any good.
- No mess. Artificial trees don’t require watering and won’t drop leaves, so you don’t need to worry about them causing your home to be moist or making a mess you have to clean up.
- No allergies. People can be allergic to olive trees in the same way they are to trees outside of the home, and so if you typically suffer from hay fever bringing a live olive tree into the home can make life very uncomfortable!
- You don’t need to bring soil into your home (if you don’t want to). If you have children under 5, bringing plant pots full of soil into your home can lead to some… memorable When you choose an artificial olive tree you can skip the soil and use gravel or pebbles, or even just wrap the tree in a stylish blanket and put it into a belly basket - you’d be surprised how good this can look and it will ensure there aren’t any events that leave you with a dirty stain in your beautiful cream carpet.
What should I consider before buying an artificial olive tree?
Where you want to put it/them - While there’s nothing to stop you ordering the artificial plants you like and then finding a place for them, it can lead to placements that look not quite right. While we’re all for that garden center look if you love artificial plants, a little thought will help your home look put together rather than a little chaotic.
Don’t forget that if you want to buy an artificial olive tree to use outside that it needs to be marked as suitable for outside use - outside artificial plants have additional UV protection and are “weatherproof” to all but the most extreme weather conditions. If you use a tree that isn’t designed to be used outside, you may find that it breaks in high winds, gets a little moldy after a long wet spell in the winter, or simply just doesn’t look its best.
- Be mindful of the backdrop - Olive trees look best when set against neutral light colors, such as white, off-whites, grey, and stony shades of beige and orange. You can most definitely use them with with other colors, too, but just be aware that olive trees will generally be outshone by a bight background, not be bold enough to contrast against it as something like a monstera
- Ceiling height - this won’t be a problem for most people, but if you live in a home with low ceilings, aim to have about 6-12” of space above your tree, otherwise it can make the ceiling look even lower.
- Budget - You don’t need to break the bank to bring a quality artificial olive tree into your home, but you certainly need to beware bargains that aren’t marked down on sale. Low-cost artificial plants generally still have that just-out-the-mold look that artificial plants used to have in the 80s, so are best avoided.
What should I look for in an artificial olive tree?
The first thing you should ask yourself when considering an artificial olive tree is, “does it look real?” While live trees should all generally look the same, provided it’s the same species, regardless of price or where you find them, the same can not be said for faux trees. If you find an olive tree in a hardware store for £19.99, the quality won’t be the same as one that costs £80-150, even if they’re the same general size.
It’s important to remember that someone has designed and manufactured these faux plants, so unless you stumble over a really lucky find somewhere, the price will indicate quality. A good quality faux olive tree will not look fake or plastic ally, it will look realistic until you’re up close or even until you touch it - in fact, the best are very difficult to tell from the real thing, as they have real-touch leaves. Our artificial trees also use real wooden stems so they’re almost indistinguishable from the real thing.
Another factor is height - if you want your artificial olive tree to be a focal point in the room, look for one that’s at least 4 - 5 feet tall with a good spread of leaves and branches so it takes up space. If you want it to fill a narrow corner, look for one that’s taller and narrower.
Branch distribution is another important factor that will have a drastic effect on the final look of your olive tree. If you’ve fallen in love with subtle, tall, spindly olive trees, don’t order one that looks bushy in the product pictures. Some plants will offer some degree of customization when you’re “fluffing” it after you get it out the box, but not all.
Finally, do you want a faux olive tree with faux olives or without? Most faux olive trees have black olives, while some have green, and some are fruitless. We personally love the way some dainty black olives look (especially in or near a kitchen or dining room) but you do have other options, including removing the olives on a tree if you don’t like them.
What should I plant my artificial olive tree in?
The world’s your oyster here! What you choose to plant your artificial olive tree in depends on your decor and the look you’re trying to create. If you’re keeping things relaxed, a belly basket will serve you well, if you want to embrace the Mediterranean look try a wide terracotta pot, and if you’re going for a clean, modern look, try a concrete or stone-look tall pot. In general, we again recommend sticking to neutral colors such as white, brown, tan, soft oranges (like terracotta), grey, and black.
What other artificial plants work well with a faux olive tree?
Pairing a plant with a muted color palette like an olive tree can be a challenge, so we recommend pairing it with any of the following:
- An artificial eucalyptus tree - this would be our number one recommendation because they both share those softer shades of green with touches of silver. Of course eucalyptus has the same calming associations as olive trees so this is a great paring.
- An artificial areca palm - the gentle green tones of this palm plant and relaxed distribution of leaves makes this a good pairing for a faux olive tree, though they are generally best used in opposite corners of a room.
- An artificial bamboo tree - of course the quintessential relaxing plant we all know and love is the bamboo tree, and they work surprisingly well in the same space. Use the bamboo in an area where you’re happy for it to take up a lot of room and use the olive tree to draw the eye against a flat wall (rather than in a corner) or in an area that transitions from one area of the house to another.
- Artificial hanging willow vines - for just a touch of added greenery, hanging a few of these artificial willow vines from pictures on the wall and the top of book shelves is extremely effective.
- Classic leaf artificial hanging basket - similarly, this classic leaf artificial hanging basket brings all the additional relaxed vibes you need.
How should I style an artificial olive tree?
Fallen in love with an artificial olive tree but aren’t sure how to style it? Here are some ideas:
- In a belly basket besides a chest of drawers in your bedroom or a console table in your living room or hallway
- In two corners of your dining room
- In the kitchen near the wine cooler
- In deep terracotta pots in your orangery/conservatory - they’re ideal to frame the main door out into the back garden
- Place it beside the couch that is hardly used rather than another square side table - you can always move it for family gatherings or pull the coffee table out so everyone has a place to put their tea!
- Place one or two in a bay window to give you a little privacy without having to rely on blinds.
- Try a small plant stand to give it additional height (especially effective for homes with high ceilings)
- Use it in a large bathroom (they are typically echo y and difficult to decorate, so an artificial olive tree does wonders for warming the space)
Where can I buy a realistic artificial olive tree?
If you’re looking for realistic artificial plants for inside or outside your home, you’ll find something to suit your needs at Artificial Eden. We have all the quality artificial plants you need to fill your home or business with lush green foliage that will wow, without any of the maintenance. To start shopping, click here.