Hardwood Flooring Options: Olive
Most of us think of olive trees only in connection with the olives they produce. The wood from olive trees, however, is also very useful in a variety of applications, hardwood flooring among them. This may raise slight alarm in some quarters as it seems rather counter-intuitive to chop down food-producing trees in order to obtain flooring materials, but the truth is that olive hardwood flooring is produced very sustainably since is it most often harvested not from the trunks of trees, but from those branches that are no longer producing much fruit any longer. This wood needs to be cut off in any case so that the olive trees can devote more of their resources toward fruit production.
Olive wood derives mainly from Brazil, Africa, Italy and Spain and has a slight green tone that makes it stand out against other, more common, wood flooring species. Many boards feature light brown or yellow streaks; some streaks may even verge toward orange hues.
Most hardwood planks made from olive trees are about three inches wide and three-quarters of an inch thick. Wider planks are more unusual due to the fact that wood is harvested not from the wide trunks of these trees, but from the branches, which are naturally thinner. One thing that makes olive wood distinct is its high content of oil, which tends to make the wood very stable and durable. It is particularly suitable for places in the home where there might be water present since this oil content makes it naturally resistant to moisture.
Like all wood flooring, olive will need periodic hardwood floor sanding.