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Corylus cornuta

Corylus cornuta - beaked hazel

corylus_cornuta_siemenet_jsaarinen.jpg

 

The common name comes from the shape of the nut’s protective covering, while the Latin cornus means ’horn’. The nuts themselves are larger than those of the native hazelnut (Corylus avellana) and tasty, attracting squirrels as well as people. Picking the nuts can be unpleasant, as they have a covering of prickly hairs.

In habit, the beaked hazel is a multi-stemmed erect shrub, though not as tall as the native species. It is also closer-growing, more erect, and more shrub-like, altogether more attractive in form, and would make an excellent multipurpose plant for Finnish conditions if only someone would start producing seedlings.

There are beaked hazels growing at Mustila of both eastern and western North American origin, and both have thrived in somewhat poor soil. Given the correct provenance, this species could well be hardy up to central Finland.

 

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