Our almonds are very ornamental trees bearing showy, light pink blossom in spring. The almond is a deciduous tree, growing 4–10 m (13–33 ft) in height, with a trunk of up to 30 cm (12 in) in diameter. The almond tree originated in the Middle East.
Almond is considered to be one of the earliest domesticated tree nuts. Wild almonds are bitter, the kernel produces deadly cyanide upon mechanical handling, and eating even a few dozen at one sitting can be fatal. Selection of the sweet type, from the many bitter types in wild, marked the beginning of almond domestication. How humans selected the sweet type remains a mystery.
Domesticated almonds appear in the Early Bronze Age (3000–2000 BC) such as the archaeological sites of Numeria (Jordan), or possibly a little earlier. Another well-known archaeological example of the almond is the fruit found in Tutankhamun's tomb in Egypt (c. 1325 BC), probably imported from the Levant.
In some cultures, the almond tree is highly revered. and is mentioned numerous times in the Bible. In the Hebrew Bible, the almond was a symbol of watchfulness and promise due to its early flowering.
Latin name: Prunus persicoides Robijn
Uses: eating raw/ cooking
Fruit colour: brown
Flowering time: March
Picking time: September
Eating/storing time: over a year
Tree vigour: 4 - 10 metres
Rootstock: St Julien
Year planted: 2006