The divine hazelnut

Rosa 'All Ablaze' blazes cherry red in Burke Brothers' Tuscany exhibit, accenting classic Italian elements with bright flowers. (Ron Tarver / Staff photographer)

Hazelnuts have to be one of nature's best-tasting treats. This is how they look "in the wild," tucked inside their pods, at Bowman's Hill Wildflower Preserve. The hazelnut or filbert tree is an American native - Bowman's Hill is famous for its collection of natives. It's more an understory tree, reaching heights of maybe 10 or 15 feet. And I'd never seen one in fruit before. One tree typically produces four to six quarts of nuts a year. Too bad I didn't have a bucket handy. All I could think of was hazelnut gelato ... and Nutella ... and pralines ... I suppose these brown beauties will feed squirrels, not humans. Pity! 

Continue Reading