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Hazelnut fantasy

 
Beth Yeoman
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I had a little fantasy going for a while, about quietly hiking into a large forested site that was owned by the local school district, used for forestry education, and open to the public... I would hike up to the top and plant a bunch of hazelnuts... shrubs that would do well in the Pacific Northwest woods. But between a) lack of funds and b) the only info I could find on hazelnuts said that I needed an assortment of varieties for crosspolilnation, I let the idea slide into oblivion.
 
Devin Lavign
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Growing up in Bellingham WA we had a single hazel tree in our yard. It seemed to produce nuts just fine with no other hazelnut tree anywhere I found near by. It grew quite well in B'ham's climate.

As for going Johnny Hazel tree on the NW, not sure how good an idea that would be. While I love the trees and the nuts, humans have really mucked ecosystems up by introducing non native species into the wild. It is one thing to do it on your own land where you manage the forest to some degree. But releasing them into the wild I would question what the unforeseen impact(s) might be.
 
Nicole Alderman
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I wonder how many hazelnuts you'd actually get out of the trees. My mom has at least three hazelnut trees on her property and has for many years. Growing up, I didn't even know we had hazelnut trees, because the squirrels ate them all before they were even ripe. Is there an easy, low-maintanience way to keep squirrels from eating all the nuts?
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Nicole Alderman wrote:Is there an easy, low-maintenance way to keep squirrels from eating all the nuts?


Give the squirrels a place to store the nuts that they collect for you.

 
Roberta Wilkinson
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Hazels are native and even pretty common here in the Washington woods. A lot of times I think people don't notice them because the nuts do get carried off so quickly by wildlife, though.

I see no problem with this plan. If you start the trees from seed, I think you'll have enough variety for cross pollination. Maybe as a low maintenance harvest plan, you can put handy nut-stashing spots nearby, like Joseph Lofthouse illustrated in this thread: http://www.permies.com/t/45993/trees/Nut-Trees-Squirrels

Edited to add: Joseph is on the scene!
 
Rhys Firth
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Joseph Lofthouse wrote:
Nicole Alderman wrote:Is there an easy, low-maintenance way to keep squirrels from eating all the nuts?


Give the squirrels a place to store the nuts that they collect for you.




Now you have my giggling to memories of the old Chip n Dale episodes where Donald decides to harvest nuts for this walnutbutter business by using a brace and bit and a bucket!




Squirrels aren't a problem here, but would a small terrier with a kennel house in amidst the trees keep squirrels away?
 
Devin Lavign
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Roberta Wilkinson wrote:Hazels are native and even pretty common here in the Washington woods. A lot of times I think people don't notice them because the nuts do get carried off so quickly by wildlife, though.


I had not known of the native NW species, thanks for correcting my mistaken info.

*edit to add,

here is some info on the native hazel trees http://oregonstate.edu/trees/broadleaf_genera/filbert_hazel.html
 
Regan Dixon
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Location: Zone 4b at 1000m, post glacial soil...British Columbia
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I'm late to this discussion, but here are some things to think about when considering planting hazelnuts in the PNW.
http://thetyee.ca/News/2015/05/25/BC-Hazelnut-Growers-Shoulder-Blight-Fight/
http://www.naturetechnursery.com/eastern-filbert-blight/
 
Devin Lavign
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No worries Regan, I am late replying.

Good call on alerting us on that issue. I am definitely planning to do some planting of hazelnuts on my property so good to know I need to watch out for this and possibly opt for resistant trees. I will do plenty of research before I start planting trees on my property.
 
Corey Schmidt
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check out badgersett research farm, they sell reasonably priced hybrid hazel seedlings (around $6 each, $75 minimum order).http://www.badgersett.com/
also due to their growing method you can plant all summer long. they are continuing hybridizing work started in the 1930s. their hazels come from many generations of crossing corylus americana, cornuta, and avellana and are supposedly guaranteed not to succumb to eastern filbert blight. I just purchased 12 plants from them to try them out here in alaska (corylus avellana is native to areas even north of me on the coast of norway).
 
Corey Schmidt
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Devin Lavign wrote:
Roberta Wilkinson wrote:Hazels are native and even pretty common here in the Washington woods. A lot of times I think people don't notice them because the nuts do get carried off so quickly by wildlife, though.


I had not known of the native NW species, thanks for correcting my mistaken info.

*edit to add,

here is some info on the native hazel trees http://oregonstate.edu/trees/broadleaf_genera/filbert_hazel.html


they are related to birch and alders and at least here the young plants could be mistaken for alders
 
Devin Lavign
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Corey Schmidt wrote:check out badgersett research farm, they sell reasonably priced hybrid hazel seedlings (around $6 each, $75 minimum order).http://www.badgersett.com/
also due to their growing method you can plant all summer long. they are continuing hybridizing work started in the 1930s. their hazels come from many generations of crossing corylus americana, cornuta, and avellana and are supposedly guaranteed not to succumb to eastern filbert blight. I just purchased 12 plants from them to try them out here in alaska (corylus avellana is native to areas even north of me on the coast of norway).


Thanks for the info, I will check them out.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://richsoil.com/cards
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