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Image by Erol Ahmed

Hazelnut - Corylus
Avellana / Colurna

The hardy Hazelnut is one of the easiest nuts to grow, they enjoy cool winters, wet springs, and warm summers. They prefer fertile, moist soil and can tolerate frosts but are not fans of the wind a sheltered site is best. You'll need to allow 2.5-5m between trees depending on the tree and how vigorous they are. ​Whiteheart is the 'flavour du jour' and is favoured by most South Island orchardists. Growing to around 4m tall, it is lower vigour than other varieties and produces quality and flavoursome nuts of a smaller size excellent for the cooking and processing market.

Hazelnuts are wind pollinated from the catkins of another variety. You should at maximum have 1 pollinator variety for every 9 other trees, with consideration about your prevailing wind direction. If you have the space, 3 or 4 different variety combinations is ideal. 

If not regularly pruned, hazelnut trees will grow suckers which form a dense bush at the base of the tree. During the hot summer months, irrigation will likely be needed and you should regularly check that moisture levels are adequate.They can be at risk of fungal and bacterial diseases, particularly in areas where there is long wet periods, followed by hot days. The only pest that can pose a real problem to the Hazelnut is the big bud mite, affected buds are best removed in winter

Once trees are established they tend to tolerate adverse conditions well and are more resistant to disease threat. These recommendations are particularly for young and newly planted trees. 

Hazelnut varieties

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Fruit Type
Months Harvest
Good Keeper
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