Szego Chinese Chestnut
Shipping Autumn of 2022
We know you've heard the line 'Chestnuts roasting on an open fire' - but have you ever considered roasting your own before? With the Szego Chestnut, you'll be able to do that and more! This hardy, complex hybrid Chestnut is resistant to both Chestnut Blight and Phytophthora. It is a fast and vigorous grower and has the added appeal of growing extra large and highly flavorful fruit (ie, 12-16 per pound). The Szego is a mid-season bloomer (mid-June to early July), when it's yellowish-white elongated flowers wistfully hang from the branches. The uniquely shaped Chestnuts ripen September-October (depending on where you are), and they make it easy for you - falling free of their burr, ready for you to roast and enjoy!
- Hardiness Zone: 4-8
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In the early days of the United States, millions of American Chestnut Trees grew across the land, from Michigan to Maine and south to Mississippi and northwestern Florida. The largest specimens were over 100 feet tall and had trunks 12 feet thick. The durable wood supplied people with the material to make furniture, railway ties, and utility poles. Then, in 1904, a deadly Chestnut blight from China appeared at the Bronx Zoo. By the time Nat King Cole was singing about roasting chestnuts in 1946, most of the country’s Chestnut Trees had fallen victim. We offer seedlings from mature, surviving Chestnut Trees in northwestern Illinois in an effort to help get this glorious species reestablished!
A complex character, this Chinese and European cross is a chestnut you'll want to plant in your yard and recommend to neighbors to grow in their yard. Szego chestnuts ripen mid-season and fall free of the burs, making picking these chestnuts easy and mostly bur-free. Each nut can be categorized as large or extra-large, and the excellent quality makes for a great snack!
Height: 30-40 ft
Width: 20-40 ft
Exposure: Full Sun
Other: Chestnut Blight resistant, great pollen producer for cross pollination
How to Grow
Szego Chestnut appreciates good, rich, moist, well-drained soil and plenty of sunshine. Provide regular irrigation. Chestnuts are encased in prickly, sea urchin–like pods, so you’ll want to keep this tree away from patios, pools, sidewalks, and other places where bare feet may wander. In rural areas, semi-wild spaces are ideal, as local wildlife like turkeys, jays, and grouse will love to share in the bounty. Before planting, check with your local extension office about the presence of Chestnut blight in your area and the feasibility of planting Chestnuts on your property.
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