Thursday, September 14, 2017

Harvest & Japaneses Beetles

Hazelnut harvest 2017

It looks like a good year for hazelnuts. I thought the plants might drop some of the nuts due to the dry condition this year, but they came out looking good.

This is a close-up of the hazelnuts in the bag. These aren't the largest nuts that are in the orchard, but this plant produces a large crop every year.

These are ripe hazelnuts ready to be picked, note the slight darkening of the husk. I also check to make sure the nut rolls out of its husk before picking.

On this plant the husk never changes color but the nut will just drop out of the husk when ripe.  To harvest this hazelnut, I just shake plant and the nuts fall on a tarp. The plant is difficult to harvest because not all the nuts are ripe and will not drop at the same time.

This is some of the drying racks to dry down the husk before they are separated.  The hazelnuts on this drying rack are from one plant.

In picture the husk is dried down enough to go through the separation process. 

This is the final product bagged and tagged. The nuts are kept in these bags for about 3 weeks to dry them down for the taste test.   If the nuts fail the taste and size test, that plant will be eliminated.

These are some of the various sizes that were picked this year.
Which one would you remove from the orchard?

Here I am in the hazelnut orchard with my new fruit picking bag that I received on by birthday. It's been really helpful, thanks Kelsey.👍

I still have lots of 2 and 3 year plants for sale. 
If interested contact me at or at 701-361-8581

Beetle Destruction

These next group of pictures was sent to me from my son's home in Lino Lakes MN showing the damage from Japanese beetles on hazelnuts.

The beetles look like they just eat the outer most leaves.

They tend to destroy just the leaves and leave the husk and nut.  It'll make it easier to find and pick the nuts, but the kernel might not fill out.  I will have to find out what shape the nut is in after it has been picked and dried down.

In this picture the husk and nut look in good shape.

The lower leaves and nuts look good.

If these plants are defoliated every year it may cause reduced nut production.
This is something I do not want to happen here in North Dakota!!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Storm Damage & New Crop

Tree damage from high winds 😕

After a bad storm I found 3 ash trees down in this part of my orchard.  I was sure wondering how many hazelnut plants are under those ash trees.

This downed ash tree was at the other side of the hazelnut orchard with the new seedlings from this year.  I did finally get this tree down without any damage to the new trees but the fence had to be repaired.

The deer fence was completely crushed from 2 ash trees. This is the first area I cleared so I could repair the fence before the deer and rabbits found the opening.

This is the only hazelnut plant that was really crushed. I removed all the broken branches and now it's looking pretty good for having had 2 ash trees on top of it.

This was taken while visiting my son in Lino Lakes, MN, which had a severe storm with lots of hail a few days before we arrived.  In this picture I was checking the damage to the hazelnuts that I planted four years ago.

The hail damaged a lots of the leaves on the plant, but the new crop of nuts still looks good.


Large crop of hazelnuts this year, now I just have to keep ahead of the squirrels!

Some of the branches that have lots of nuts are on the ground, which makes it a little hard to mow.


I'll try to show the big diversity of husks, which is the covering on the nut before it ripens.

The picture here shows more of a flower type husk.

This is another flower type of husk.

Some husks are more leaf like.

This is another picture of a leafy husk.

Can you find the hazelnut in this picture with the small open husk?

This husk completely covers the nut and has small sticky hairs covering the husk. This type is harder to pick and remove the nut from the husk.

These hazelnuts are easily removed from the husks and some will even fall out of the husk when ripe.

This an enclosed husk from a wild hazelnut.

The husk incloses the whole nut and is more leafy. This type is hard to find on the plant when ripe.

This is a beaked hazelnut husk with the long husk inclosing the whole nut.  These beaked hazelnut husks also have the small sticky hairs covering the surface.  Note the long beaked like shape.

The husk on this nut is completely open and tends to dropout. This is probably the type of hazelnut you would want for a large orchard. I do know that squirrels prefer this one.

This leafy husk hazelnut is easy to pick and dries down fast to release the nut. I like these because they can be picked and laid out on drying racks in a safe place away from various kinds of rodents.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Plants for sale & Rodent damage recovery

These are some of the hazelnut plants for sale

The hazelnut on the left is a 3 year old plant for $15. The next two are 1 & 2 year old plants for $10. The 3 month seedling on the right is $5.

If you're interested in purchasing these or looking at a mature hazelnut plant, contact me at or call 701-361-8581.

This is another picture of a 3 yr, 2yr, & a 3 month seedling.

In this picture the 3 month old seedlings are on the right, and the 1 year old plants are on the left.

These are the 1 & 2 year old plants for sale.

The hazelnut plants here are 3 years old.

The next group of pictures are the plants recovering from rodent damage.

This plant was gnawed off about an inch above the soil line.

This plant was in about the same condition.

This one is in about the same shape as the others, but the ones that were chewed below the soil line are not looking as good:(

This is the recovery row of the plants that show some signs of life.

The new crop of 2017

Can you see the small cluster of hazelnut developing under the leaf.

Can you find the hazelnut cluster here?

This looks a little fuzzy but in this cluster there are 5 hazelnuts developing, and by the end of August we will have a crop ready for picking:)

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Various types of nuts & Rodent damage

I'm often asked what types of nut do they produce, so I'm going to try to show the various types I grow in my orchard.

Not all hazelnuts are equal.
These are just some of the many different types.

This plant that produced the hazelnuts on the left was bought at a local nursery and has a large crop of small bitter nuts every year.  I did remove this plant from the orchard this fall.                          
The nut on the right 2N-77 is a hybrid plant that's growing in my orchard. It produces a nice crop of larger great tasting nuts.  I'm probably a little biased, but they are good:)

The wild hazelnuts here are from northern Minnesota. They have a medium thick shell and a bitter taste. The plant is very prolific, tends to sucker up and is hard to remove once established.
Hybrid 5-61 is more tree like and does not sucker at all. It also has a medium thick shell and a good taste.

The big difference between these two hazelnuts is shell thickness.
Hybrid 1T-19 produces a nut with a very thick shell which is hard to crack and separate the meats (kernel) from the shell. The meats are also relatively small compared to the size of the nut.
Hybrid 2N-5 has a very thin shell that cracks easily with larger meats (kernel). 

A larger sized nut does not always indicate a large kernel.

Hybrid 7-12 is a flatter shaped nut, but it has a good buttery taste. The meats are a flat bean shape. I would have eliminated this plant if it wasn't for the good taste.
Hybrid 2N-74 has a rounder shape, thin shell and a fair taste. I like this one because it's round, cracks easily in the cracking machine and separates nicely in my aspiration system.

The big difference between these nuts is the pellicle, which is the thin papery skin around the kernel.
Hybrid 5-63 has no pellicle and is a little bitter, while 2N-121 has very thick pellicle, but has a good taste.

Mice Damage 😠

When the snow melted the past few days I noticed a lot of damage from mice. I've never had problems with mice before. They must be mini beavers. I might move them to a better location this fall where I can monitor the plants all winter. I think the leaves that blow in and the snow cover made a perfect home for the little critters. 

This is another picture of the damage. I'm hoping they resprout from the bottom.
I've also noticed some of the buds are starting to swell, which is way too early and they might freeze if we get any real cold weather.

I'll give an update on the mice damage when they start leafing out.
Right now I'm  busy setting up to start this years seedlings.