Monday, 24 February 2014

Planting Nuts

You may know that last year I successfully grew an almond from seed, and it has been dormant and covered with a fleecy blanket since Autumn.  I am worried that because it was so "young" it may not survive the winter if we do in fact get a lasting snowfall at some point.  So I am planting several more just in case.  I thought while I was at it I'd give a few other nuts a go too - cashews and pine nuts.

So the first thing to do if you are planting nuts is to soak them for a minimum of 24 hours, stored in the fridge.  I left mine for 3 days, mostly because I was too busy to pot them up.  This does two things - causes the nut to swell, which aids germination, and fools the nut into a false sense of winter, meaning when you remove from the fridge and plant them, it thinks spring has arrived.

This cashew has swollen to almost twice the size after soaking
I decided to plant 2 under the surface, and experiment with one partially out of the soil. (or vermiculite)

I expect the shoot will appear from the dark spot on the top of the seed.

Cashews are really supposed to be planted in a warmer climate so honestly this is really an experiment - I'm not expecting much success.  I'll be keeping them indoors for a while to see if anything happens.

On an unrelated note, do you reckon I need to plant my onion sets out soon? Haha.


  1. Do you know how big a mature Cashew tree is? Huge! I hope you're ready for that...

  2. I honestly doubt it will survive that far, considering our climate apparently makes cashew germination "impossible". However, if it does get big enough to graft I would certainly be grafting it onto dwarf rootstock, along with my apple (which supposedly can reach up to 30 metres if not grafted to dwarf rootstock). Also going to keep them pot bound to keep under control. Not too concerned right now, since my apple "tree" is only 2 inches tall, but you're welcome to say I told you so when I complain how big they get! :)