Common name: Chinese sweet chestnut, Sweet chestnut
Chestnuts belong to the Fagaceae family which also includes Oaks and Beeches. There are four main species groups of Chestnuts commonly known as American, European, Chinese, and Japanese chestnuts. All of the species in the genus Castanea are deciduous and produce edible nuts. They are very attractive trees some with single trunks and others multi-leaders. All form long creamy flower catkins.
The Chinese Chestnut can grow to 20 meters though more commonly to 15 meters, with a broadly spreading crown, and often with multi-leaders. Leaves can be 22 cm long with toothed margins. The spiny capsules contain 2-3 glossy brown nuts. Trees prefer full sun in a moderately loamy and free-draining soil. Trees can produce nuts on solitary trees, but more nuts are produced with cross pollination. Nuts are sweet and tasty.
Chestnuts contain easily absorbed protein, and are a good source of copper, manganese, potassium, folate, thiamine, and B6. Chestnuts can be used in both sweet and savoury dishes. They are usually roasted or boiled. Once cooked -skins and papery shell removed- they can be dried and ground into flour.
- 15-20 meters
- Full sun
- good drainage
- Loamy soils
- Pb 8