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 Olea subsp. var.  
Olea europaea (Olive)
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Oleaceae > Olea var. , L.

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Olea (pronounced /ˈoʊliːə/)[1] is a genus of about 20 species in the family Oleaceae, native to warm temperate and tropical regions of southern Europe, Africa, southern Asia and Australasia. They are evergreen trees and shrubs, with small, opposite, entire leaves. The fruit is a drupe.

For humans, the most important species is by far the Olive (Olea europaea), native to the Mediterranean region. O. paniculata is a larger tree, attaining a height of 15-18 m in the forests of Queensland, and yielding a hard and tough timber. The yet harder wood of the Black Ironwood O. laurifolia, an inhabitant of Natal, is important in South Africa.

Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Olea (classical name for olive). Oleaceae. Olive. The olive tree and fruit; and other small trees or shrubs of little importance in cultivation. (The Olea fragrans of greenhouses is Osmanthus; also O. Aquifolium.)

Spiny or unarmed: Lvs. evergreen and thick, opposite, usually entire, and often rusty-tomentose beneath: fls. small, usually imperfect, white or whitish, in forking panicles or fascicles, the short calyx 4-toothed (corolla sometimes none), the short-tubed corolla with 4 valvate lobes, the stamens 2; ovary 2-loculed, bearing a short style and capitate stigma: fr. an oblong or ovoid drupe.—Between 30 and 40 trees or shrubs of the tropical and warm-temperate parts of the Old World to New Zeal.

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  1. Sunset Western Garden Book, 1995:606–607

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