Nuts

Nuts

Common name Almond, Macadamia, Walnut and more
Botanical name Various
Mature height to around 8m, some larger
Form Often wide dense canopy
Where to plant Home orchard
Known for Delicious nuts

Who knew Home Gardening could be so Delicious?

An intimate connection with nature can be found right in your backyard. Growing your own fruit and nut trees not only provides a lush, green sanctuary, but also an abundant, healthy harvest. Among the variety of fruits, we’ll focus today on nut trees – particularly, the Almond, Macadamia, and Walnut trees, among others.

Australian Born and Bred: The Irresistible Macadamia

Let’s start our journey with an iconic Aussie favourite – the Macadamia. The buttery texture and rich taste of Macadamias have established their position as one of the most globally adored nuts. They also have the distinction of being among the first ‘bush foods’ to hit the commercial market. But did you know, growing them in your own garden is not as complex as you might think?

Are Macadamias Suitable for my Garden?

Typically, Macadamia trees, under the conditions of the wild, can reach heights of up to 20m. However, in a home setting, they usually thrive within the range of 8-10m. Although you might be tempted to plant a Macadamia tree from a seed, be prepared for a long wait for the first yield, which can be unpredictable at best. The recommended approach is to purchase grafted trees.

Ideal for tropical and subtropical climates, Macadamia trees are surprisingly adaptable and can prosper well in frost-free, warm-temperate regions. Some variants can even withstand cooler climates and mild frosts.

Commercially, Macadamia cultivation stretches from Port Macquarie in the south, all the way up to the Atherton Tablelands in the north. Outside of Australia, Macadamias are also grown in regions such as Hawaii, South Africa, Kenya, and Guatemala.

Compact and Vibrant: The Almond Tree

For those looking for a more compact option, Almond trees, typically growing to about 3m, could be the perfect fit for your home garden. Their striking pink or white blooms add a pop of colour from mid-winter and start bearing nuts after a three-year growth period.

While the standard cultivation method requires two varieties for pollination, there are self-fertile types like the ‘All-in-One’ or ‘Dwarf Almond’ that are especially suitable for suburban gardens.

You’ll find Almond trees sprouting across various regions in Australia: Adelaide and the Riverland; Sunraysia (Victoria); Riverina (NSW); and the Swan region (WA). Interestingly, Australia holds the title as the second largest producer of almonds in the world, right behind California, USA.

A Taste of Europe: Hazelnuts and Pistachios

If you’re seeking some European flair in your garden, consider Hazelnuts. They aren’t native to Australia, so the commercial variants are cultivars of the European hazelnut. You’ll find Hazelnuts happily growing in the temperate zones of south-eastern Australia, near Orange (NSW) and Myrtleford (Victoria).

Another exciting choice is the Pistachio tree. While not indigenous, Pistachios have found a happy home in the Murray River valley, between Victoria and South Australia, where they are produced successfully in commercial quantities.

Nut Trees for the Cold: Chestnuts and Walnuts

Do you live in a colder climate? Don’t worry, we haven’t forgotten you. Chestnuts and Walnuts are the perfect choice for colder regions. They mainly thrive in the southern states of Australia, including the Southern Tablelands, Blue Mountains, and North-east Victoria.

So, whether you have a tropical paradise or a cooler retreat, there’s a nut tree ready to find a home in your garden. Ready to get your hands dirty?

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