Polk farms attempt to grow olive trees - FOX 13 News

Polk farms attempt to grow olive trees

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LAKELAND (FOX 13) -

A little olive oil, seasoning and bread, and you're good to go. A great appetizer. Now most of the olive oil we consume in the U.S. is from Italy, Spain and California. But soon, Florida may begin producing it too.

Several Polk County families are planting olives as an experiment. On the Smith Family Farm in North Lakeland, they have planted about five acres. They decided to take a chance on olives after their sod business all but disappeared because the construction industry is so painfully slow.

They hoped to harvest the first olives this year, but Mother Nature didn't cooperate -- they lost half their bushes last year because of the crazy weather. It was warm during the day and very cold at night, and the bushes need a gradual change in the weather to toughen up.

"This year, if they all get frozen back like they did last year, we won't replant," Donna Smith told FOX 13. "This will probably be it for us."

Click on the video player to see Ken Suarez's full report.

 

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