Growing Almond Nuts
The almond is regarded as a dual-purpose tree. It is sometimes cultivated for its beauty, and sometimes for the nuts it will bear. Almonds are therefore often planted as specimen trees on a lawn, and are not usually planted in an orchard.
Almond trees are not very particular about. Heavy clays should be well-drained. If the land is sandy and also acid, apply carbonate of lime at ½ lb. per sq. yd.
Take care to choose a site for the trees where there is some protection from the freezing winds of early spring, otherwise the blossoms will not set and nuts will not be produced.
Buy either three- or four-year-old standard or half-standard trees.
Plant the trees any time between November and January. Dig a circular hole 3 ft. across and 8 in. deep.
Examine the roots and if any of them have been damaged cut them back with a sharp knife.
Because of the height of the tree double stakes are necessary. Drive them in about 2 ft. apart on either side of the centre of the hole. Nail a cross bar from one stake to the other and tie the tree to it with a plastic tie. Place the tree in the centre of the hole and spread out the roots evenly all round. Put back the soil gradually and tread it down well from time to time as the hole fills up.
After planting almond plants, mulch all round the trees with sedge peat to a depth of l in.
Once a year in February apply hoof and horn meal at the rate of 3 oz. per sq. yd. all round the trees and as far as their branches spread.
For the first four years after planting, cut back the one-year-old leaders by about half to just above a bud to build up good, strong branches.
Also cut back by a half any of the side growths that tend to cross or rub one another.
This pruning encourages earlier successful cropping.
From the fifth year onward allow the almond tree to grow naturally: it will look more beautiful.
Almonds might not sound too appealing to try to grow, but there are many other types of fruiting trees to choose from.