I've had this olive tree for over 3 years on my (south-east-facing) balcony in Munich, Germany. It's getting a bit 'wide' for my tastes, and I'd like to prune it to thicken the growth and encourage it to grow up, not just out.

I'm concerned if I cut it back hard (i.e., closer to the trunk where there are no leaves), it won't produce any new leaves/offshoots.

  1. What time of year should I prune it? (It now has tiny baby olives)
  2. How should I prune it? (I.e., Where on which branches to best encourage growth?)

Olive tree in pot on my balcony; flowers are now tiny olives

1 Answer 1


Where you live, early spring is the time to prune back, to give it time for new growth to harden off before winter sets in. As yours is in a pot, tip pruning of main branches that you don't cut off will restrict its size - see here https://www.rhs.org.uk/fruit/olives/grow-your-own

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