Will Holland wrote:Hi Matu, I'd like to take you up on that seedling offer! I can probably make this happen with proper arrangements and good timing. When is the best time to dig em up and have them survive?
Alder Burns wrote:I think my technique for acorns might work for chestnuts too, since they are rather similar in shell texture and interior consistency. I simply clip each nut in half with a good pair of heavy hand pruners. Sometimes I will go back through and cut each half into quarters. At this point the shells are easy to separate from the nuts, perhaps encouraged by spreading out to dry for a few hours or a day.
The problem with chestnuts and acorns is that they are starchy and moist, unlike other nuts, and relatively perishable when fresh, whether in the shell or not. To store them in bulk, many people freeze them, but what if one has too many. Both can become the starchy staple of a diet, and have been wherever they grow in the world.
What I do is spread the pieces to dry in the sun, or wherever you like to dry food. Take them in or cover them at night or in wet weather. When the pieces are completely dry (acorns at least become flint-hard, and shatter when you try to clip them again), they can be put into a bucket and stirred around. This sloughs off the thin, bitter inner peel, which can then be winnowed off by pouring the pieces between two buckets in the wind. Then store in jugs or jars, much as you would grain. They will keep at least a year like this.
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