Did you know there are over 30 different varieties of almonds grown
commercially?! All have their own unique purpose, size, and shape. Most
almond farmers, have multiple varieties in the same orchard, the most
popular being nonpareil. Nonpareil is the prettiest almond, most widely
produced and comes with the biggest return back to the grower. But we
can't all farm nonpareils, they need to be pollinated somehow. Almonds
typically need at least two varieties in an orchard because the almond
flower cannot pollinate itself like other fruit trees can. We learned about that with the almond bloom and bee blog!! So we have
pollinator varieties that complement other varieties and offer their own
unique purpose. I am going to outline a few of the more widely grown
varieties for you, but feel free to check out The Almond Board of California's full guide.
Nonpareil has the most uses and purposes of any other nut. It can be
used in raw form, blanched, processed or anything you …
When people think of almond uses they tend to just think of using the almond
meat. Almonds have multiple by-products actually. When almonds are processed at the huller the almond meat is separated from the hull and
shell. The hulls, shells and hash are also sold and used.
Almond hulls are the green out most layer of the almond while on the
tree. The hull is what splits and starts the countdown to harvest. Once the almond has dried in the field, the hull also dries and
begins to separate from the almond. At the huller, they remove the hulls
and stock pile them until sold. Almond hulls are sold for animal feed, most
commonly dairy feed. The hulls actually add nutrition to the animals
diet and aid in healthy milk production. Growing up on my family's farm, we used the hulls
to feed our breeding sheep. It was cheaper than grain, helped to add
nutrition to the animal diet and while filled them up faster.
Almond shells are the hard layer between the hull and the almond meat.
It's spring and the almond trees are covered with shiny leaves and growing nuts. The trees are beautiful and full of new life. As they grow the 2016 harvest crop, they need fertilizer to help them grow. Fertilizer is like plant food or vitamins that give the trees a little extra boost. Just like you feed your garden fertilizer, your rose bushes plant food, or like how you take your daily vitamins, we feed our almond trees fertilizer.
We prefer the fertigation method to fertilize our trees through the water in our irrigation drip hoses. This helps us to be more efficient and effective in our fertilizer use. When we fertilize in the spring we use three different kinds of fertilizers; Nitrogen, Potassium and Zinc. It is like a farmers version of a a perfect vitamin combination.
Nitrogen is important to help encourage leaf growth and nut development. Nitrogen provides the building block to form protein and oils. One of the key reasons you probably eat almonds is because they are high …