Hazels are filling out despite a terrible pollination season
One of the hazelnut trees here at Z’s Nutty Ridge we are propagating, produces jumbo sized nuts. Jumbo sized nuts are desired for out of hand eating. Although too big for commercial confection needs, this tree gets accolades from all that see it.
Another picture of the same tree.
This spring came early with catkins elongating late February, and pollen was just beginning to shed before we went into a deep freeze. The temperatures dropped to -4 Fahrenheit. So only the earliest pollen was available before the catkins were frozen. We learned only a few trees can still continue to elongate and release pollen after such a freeze event. Most native hazelnut flowers can handle this deep freeze but without pollen the nut set was very low this year. We now know what trees can handle a late spring deep freeze and produce nuts. We will use these trees with greater emphasis in our breeding program to continue to prefect our native hybrid trees.