Chestnut Trees and Chestnuts
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Grouping Chestnut Trees

We like to group things in our lives to make our lives and our things manageable. There are all sorts of chestnut trees, too many sorts to deal with for most people, in a way there are the important sorts and the not so important sorts. Here is a list of some of the sorts people talk about when discussing chestnut trees:

The tree grows tall
The tree is self pollinating
Produces large nuts
A tree that looks pretty
Produces nuts that taste good
Can survive very cold winters (below -20 F)
Trees that will grow in clay soil
Produces nuts that fall free of the burr
Produces nuts that fall in the burr
Produce nuts every year
Produces a lot of nuts
Produces nuts that are easy to peal
Produces nuts with a nice texture

Oh, can the list go on and on, and can you imagine trying to fit everybody's fancy with a just a chestnut tree or two. Even a good list ends up with critics saying "where's the logic in that", or "I beg to differ". Let's take one of these sorts and break it down to show why these grouping lists can have problems. The .Produces nuts every year. is a good one to start with. The many different factors of getting a chestnut tree to produce nuts very year can work for one orchardist and be a total failure for another for any one of the following reasons:

1. Late spring frosts
2. Failure in pollination of the nuts
3. Poor growing conditions
4. Excessive watering in the spring, summer, or fall
5. Not enough water in the spring, summer, or fall
6. Insects eating all the leaves on the tree
7. Wind damage to the branches every year
8. Not enough heat during the growing season

This is just a partial list of possible reasons a chestnut tree can do just fine in one place and not another. So the grouping would be flawed for the orchardist who ends up with no nuts every year, year after year, hope and despair. So for those who "beg to differ" and state "where's the logic in that", consider this list flawed beyond help. For those looking for a little help in selecting a chestnut tree(s), let this provide some simple guidance. Also, the list of trees is based on our experience and published research performed by Missouri State University Department of Agroforestry.

These lists of sorts are in order of some importance, mainly, from the tree just being able to survive to "Oh, that's nice".

Chestnut trees that will grow in clay soil: Simple, no chestnut tree will survive in clay soils.

Can survive very cold winters (below -20 F): There is only one chestnut tree known to survive colder than -30F and that is the Luvall's Monster. Above -15F almost all chestnut trees will survive winters where the coldest colds never drop below -15 degrees F. Between -30 F and -15 F a few trees are known to survive, Colossal, Prococe Migoule, American, and most Chinese or Chinese hybrids.

Chestnut blight resistant: Most Chinese and Chinese hybrid chestnut trees are blight tolerant, most others are not. Here are a few European and European hybrids known to have resistance: Marissard, Maraval, and Bouche de Betizac.

Produce nuts every year: Some chestnut trees produce nuts almost no matter what you throw at them, with the exception of late frosts and toxic soils. Here is a list: Bisalta #3, Bouche de Betizac, Prococe Migoule, Marigoule, Belle Epine, and Yoo Ma.

Trees that are late to bud out, so late frosts are not as much an issue: Maraval, American, and Belle Epine.

The tree is self pollinating: no chestnut trees are known to be self pollinating.

Produces large nuts: Colossal, Marissard, Okei, Szego, Bouche de Betizac, and Prococe Migoule.

Produces a lot of nuts: Colossal, Regina Montis, Bisalta #3, and Belle Epine

Produces nuts that fall in the burr: Marigoule.

Produces nuts that fall free of the burr: Bisalta #3, Belle Epine, Maraval, Prococe Migoule, and Bouche de Betizac.

Produces nuts that are easy to peal: Bisalta #3, Marigoule, Prococe Migoule, and Bouche de Beticaz.

Produces nuts that taste good: Marigoule, Prococe Migoule, Bouche de Betizac, and Szego.

The tree grows tall or upright: American, Regis Montis, Prococe Migoule, Bouche de Betizac, and Marigoule.

A tree that looks pretty: Marigoule, Bisalta #3, Belle Epine, and Szego

Produces nuts with a nice texture: Marrone di Marradi, Marigoule, Szego, and Bisalta #3.

The best pollen producers: Maraval, Prococe Migoule, Okei, Regina Montis, and Szego.


Contact Information:

Farm Location:
6160 Everson Goshen Rd
Everson, WA 98247
Ph: (360) 592-3397

Business Offices:
Washington Chestnut Company
6160 Everson Goshen Rd.
Everson, WA 98247
Ph: (360) 592-3397