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Author Topic: Chestnuts  (Read 5117 times)

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Offline bandmiller2

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Chestnuts
« on: August 26, 2009, 05:40:27 AM »
I have two blight resistant chinese/american chestnut trees for the last two years are producing alot of the prickley pods but they have only  tiny nuts in side.Wonder if its a maturity thing or a polination problem trees are large probibly 15 yrs. old. Frank C.
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Offline SPIKER

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2009, 08:20:59 PM »
Im no expert on the subject but I was told that the OLD AMERICAN CHESTNUTS were of lower quality seeds/nuts they were generally small nuts compared to the Chinese chestnuts part of the reason that the Chinese chestnuts were brought here (with the blight as well.)

though I am not a expert on them I just read a good bit about them & listened to what was told.

Mark
I'm looking for help all the shrinks have given up on me :o

Offline letemgrow

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2009, 02:33:25 PM »
The american chesnuts were smaller, but with more flavor than the rest from all accounts I have read.  If the nuts inside are shriveled up then it sounds like a pollination problem since they cannot pollinate themselves. 

Offline bandmiller2

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2009, 06:00:42 AM »
Letemgrow,your probibly correct we have had a shortage of bees around here for several years.I planted two trees beside each outher and acording to the nursery catalog should cross pollinate.Trying to encourage a friend thats interested in bee keeping. Frank C.
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Offline bjorn

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2009, 10:30:17 AM »
Some years ago I planted two chinese chestnuts because I was told that they require a pollinator.  One died, and now I have one by itself, aroung 15 feet tall.  This year it started to produce, but many of the burs have only one full size nut, the rest are shriveled.  I believe that is due to poor pollination.  My question:  Is it possible that the viable nuts self pollinated from the same tree?  The only other option would be cross pollination from native chestnuts that do grow in the nearby forest.  However, these are your standard stump sprouts, some as much as 20' tall.  What do y'all think? 

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2009, 10:53:16 AM »
If they are anything like oak, they can self pollinate. The seed however won't be as thrifty as from a cross. I have planted many acorns from a single red oak tree and oak of any kind are not very common in our woods, usually growing in small stands and not off by themselves as a single tree. Often the male and female flowers on one single tree come out at different times to discourage self pollination. I have a white oak that has female flowers, but I have never seen pollen yet. I suspect I will in time because I know of a single English white oak that produces seed from one tree, seedlings coming up around a fenced in gave yard. The tree was brought over, over 100 years ago.
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Offline letemgrow

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2009, 01:18:40 AM »
chestnuts require more than one for pollination...I have heard that a few nuts can be produced without a pollinator, but most will just be shriveled, un-pollinated chestnuts inside.  If you have stump sprouts that are 20 feet tall and they are getting plenty of sun, they should flower and hopefully have pollinated nuts inside them too. 

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2009, 06:01:21 AM »
The pistillate flowers, according to the dendro text, are at the base of a bisexual ament. Staminate flowers are on long aments like on the oaks and beech. So, I think it's possible to self pollinate, but as stated they are not going to be as thrifty a seed. Sometimes there are abortive stamins on the calyx of the flower around the ovary.

They thought they had a blight resistant cross back in 1946, called the R. B. Clapper chestnut. By 1963 it had attained a height of 45 feet and 7.3 inch dbh. However, in 1969 it was reported that the tree had finally been attacked by the fungus. In the late 60's-early 70's a couple of French scientists developed a hypervirulent strain of the fungus to inoculate the virulent one. This was done on a European species of the chestnut C. sativa. In 1972 the Connecticut AG Experimental Station received cultures of these to try with the American chestnut. It did slow the growth of the fungus.

Move'n on.

Offline bjorn

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2009, 08:42:13 AM »
letemgrow,

Some of these (American Chestnut Sprouts) do flower and produce burs, but I have only found shriveled nuts inside.  One is about 150-200 feet from my planted Chinese chestnut.  Would this be too far away to get cross pollination?

SwampDonkey,

Thanks for the interesting info.

Bjorn


Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2009, 09:03:53 PM »
The article about the hypervirulent strain of fungus is written by R. A. Jaynes in "Connecticut Woodlands" Volume 40:pages 3-5, 1975-1976.

Source for the "Connecticut Woodlands" journal is at

http://www.ctwoodlands.org/node/120
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Offline Dana

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2009, 06:16:25 PM »
You could graft some chestnuts off another tree onto yours and get your cross pollination. I took a week-end grafting course taught by Michigan State and we did just that. Hands on in a seed started chestnut orchard.
Grass-fed beef farmer, part time sawyer

Offline letemgrow

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #11 on: October 30, 2009, 09:43:57 AM »
letemgrow,

Some of these (American Chestnut Sprouts) do flower and produce burs, but I have only found shriveled nuts inside.  One is about 150-200 feet from my planted Chinese chestnut.  Would this be too far away to get cross pollination?



150-200 feet would be the max for good pollination from what I have read.  It sounds like good pollination is not happening tho.   ;D

Offline piedmont

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Re: Chestnuts
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2010, 04:27:31 PM »
Letemgrow,your probibly correct we have had a shortage of bees around here for several years.I planted two trees beside each outher and acording to the nursery catalog should cross pollinate.Trying to encourage a friend thats interested in bee keeping. Frank C.

Frank, chestnuts are wind-pollinated, like oaks. The bees won't do them any good. But still encourage that friend-- bees have plenty of other attractive qualities!


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