I have a twisted hazel in a big pot in my front yard. I’ve had it for years allowing it to twist away, the big green leaves curling as if burnt by the wind although they are perfectly healthy. Most years it manages to bear a few hazel nuts and if I’m lucky I get to them before the squirrels.
When I bought the small tree I had no idea that it would bear fruit and the first time I found a nut I was really surprised wondering, as I found it lying in the gravel, where it had come from. As I said, it usually manages about four of five nuts a year, well it isn’t a very big tree, but this year there seem to be lots and, as it’s only July, they are pretty early in forming.
In fact lots of fruits are out of sync this year. Perhaps it’s the result of the long hot summer we’re having, but the blackberries are already on the bushes and the elderberries aren’t far behind.
Anyway my hazel nuts made me think of the old nursery rhyme. The one that tells children that they can gather nuts in May when of course they can’t. The nutting season isn’t usually until the autumn, but as a child I remember looking for nuts in a hazel grove in May and being very disappointed not to find any.