Dunstan Chestnuts Castanea dentata X mollissima
Chestnuts seedling trees™ are the best and most widely planted chestnut
trees in America - they combine the excellent nut quality and tree form
with blight resistance. Dunstan chestnut trees have been grown
successfully from Maine and New York, west to Illinois and Wisconsin,
and south to east Texas and Florida. They are excellent for commercial
and backyard orchards, and are the best tree to plant for attracting
deer and wildlife.
Chestnuts™ begin to bear at only 3-5 years of age of the tree, care and
climate they receive. They produce heavy annual crops (never skipping a
year like oaks) of very large, sweet tasting (no tannin) nuts that
average 20-35/lb in size, and can produce 20 lbs/tree after only 10
years, and as much as 50-100 lbs/tree at maturity. They are easy to grow
and thrive in a variety of locations.
Trees are like children:
you get out of them what you put into them. The more you can help with
fertilizer and good conditions, the faster they will grow and the sooner
will come into production. New plants haven't developed enough feeder
roots or storage roots to find and store the water they need to survive,
so you must water new plants. Water with intelligence, not just on a
rigid schedule. Place your finger in the soil above the plant's roots
each day. If the soils is dry, water. If the soil is not dry then do
not. The roots of a tree need oxygen, and too much water deprives them
of that. Harming a plant's roots when it is young can negatively affect
the plant for the rest of its life.
planting site selection should be well-drained, non-low lying area,
sandy loam soils with a pH between 5.0-7.0. Full sun is required for nut
production minimum of 6 hours of full sun. Prepare the area by
removing any weeds prior to planting. This step is often overlooked but
is absolutely critical to any successful planting. Weeds and grass
steal light, water and nutrients from your trees. We recommend weed
Dig the hole twice as wide as the pot but no deeper
than the root-ball. Do not add amendments to the soil such as mulch or
organic matter, this acts like a sponge and increases root rot and robs
the trees of nitrogen from the fertilizer (microbes breaking down the
organic matter use nitrogen in the process).
If planting in heavy
clay soils, break up the ground under and around the hole, so that the
tree is not planted in a bath tub. Roots need oxygen to be able to
Carefully remove the tree from the pot keeping the soil
around the roots intact. It helps to tap the outside of the container
to loosen the edge. Do not yank the tree out of the container as this
can separate the roots from the tree. Carefully separate the roots if
they are root bound.
We recommend keeping the pot stake attached
to the tree for 1 season. After 1 season you can remove the pot stake.
If the tree appears stable staking is not needed. If using Grow Tubes then staking the tree is not necessary.
If staking is necessary, hold the trunk with one hand to find the
height at which the unsupported top can stand up on its own and will
spring back to a vertical position if lightly flexed. Allow trees a
slight amount of flex rather than holding them rigidly in place. Tree
straps should be made of material that will not injure or girdle the
tree. Instructions for staking trees
Remove any ties, tags and labels from trees to prevent girdling trunks and branches.
the tree at the same height they were grow in the pot, not deeper. Bare
root trees will have a noticeable color difference between the roots
and the trunk. Plant at the depth of this color difference.
in the planting hole with the native soil. Set the tree in the middle
of the hole. Avoid planting the tree too deep. Using some soil, secure
the tree in a straight position, then fill and firmly pack the hole with
the native soil.
We recommend creating a water-holding basin around the hole
and water the trees in thoroughly at planting. Remove the berm at the
end of the second growing season. Water slowly at the drip-line. Water
in thoroughly, making sure there are no air pockets around the roots.
Air pockets prevent roots from growing into the soil around it. After
the water has soaked in, spread a protective layer of mulch 2-4" deep
around the trunk pulling the mulch a few inches away from the trunk to keep the moisture from accumulating next to the bark.
Choices for mulch, leaf litter, hay, shredded or fine bark, pine
Plant at least 2 Dunstan Chestnut seedling trees for pollination, but production is better with
more trees when planted 20-50’ apart. Ideal spacing for nut production
is 35-40' apart.
It is important to provide
a balanced fertilizer such as Scotts Osmocote time release with minor
elements or Espoma Holly Tone Organic Fertilizer.
Minors are very important because if they are not available in certain
as they can be a limiting factor for plant growth. We recommend using
Scotts Osmocote for younger trees Indoor/Outdoor (19-6-12) recommend
amount per directions or Espoma Holly Tone Organic Fertilizer. Spread
the fertilizer evenly under the entire canopy of the tree avoiding a
5-inch area around the trunk. Mix in top 1-3 " of soil, then water in.
For mature trees we recommend using Scotts Osmocote Vegetable/Flower
(14-14-14) recommended amount per directions.
Your local extension service
will make recommendations along with the soil test. Strong rains can also leach
away much of the Nitrogen, which is highly soluable. Nitrogen is a key element
required for plant growth. Do not fertilize at planting. Quick-release
lawn or garden fertilizer can burn the tender roots of young trees before they
become established. We recommend waiting at least a month after the trees have
leafed out before fertilizing with a time-released fertilizer such as Scotts
Osmocote. After applying the fertilizer make sure you water your trees lightly
Once the trees are established, fertilize in
(Mar-April) when growth begins and again in early June with the start
of summer rains. Do not fertilize in the fall, which can promote late
season tender growth that can be damaged by early frosts.
best time to fertilize fruit trees is during the growing season,
starting in early spring (after bud break) and finishing by July.
is the single most important factor for tree survival. If the year you
plant is like the severe drought experienced by the Midwest several
summers ago, if you do not water your trees they will die. The truth is
that many trees die from too little or too much water during the first
few months after planting. Trees are likely to get too little water in
well-drained soil and too much in soil that is poorly drained. We
recommend for best success to supplemental water your newly planted
trees for the first two years.
planted trees planted in the spring should be watered regularly
(2-4x/week) for the first year or two especially if rains are
infrequent. Water thoroughly but do not over-water; the soil should dry
down slightly between watering. Irrigation from lawn sprinklers is
generally not sufficient until the plants are well established. This is
the most critical step in the establishment of your new trees!
you plant in the fall, water in at planting, and then 1x/week until
they lose their leaves and go dormant with the onset of winter. Resume
watering after leaf out in the spring. Make sure water is applied to the
original root ball. Adjust water according to soil type, temperature,
rainfall, and other irrigation.
Make sure water is applied to the original
root ball. Adjust water according to soil type,
temperature, rainfall, and other irrigation.
The first year is a critical time for the establishment of a new pear. Water thoroughly twice a
week on light soils and once a week on clay soils. Soak the entire root system deeply.
Water regularly, especially during dry periods.
Soil's acidity or
alkalinity is determined by pH. The best range for growing most fruit and
flowering trees is between 5.0 and 7.0. Soils in much of the South fall within
this range. Soils in pine woods are often lower (4.0-5.0) , and need to be
raised by the application of lime or dolomite (see your County Agent for a soil
test and recommended rates). Other areas (such as Texas) have soils with
pH>7, which will need to be acidified or lowered by the application of
nitrogen sulfate or other sulfur-based fertilizers.
It is important to keep
grass and weeds from competing with young trees - they are the biggest
competitor for young trees and steal water and fertilizer from the new
plantings. Try to keep a 2-3' circle clear of weeds from the base of the trunk.
Mulch moderates soil temperature extremes and helps moisture retention as well as keeps weed
growth down. We recommend Grow Tubes, because you can spray Roundup or other
herbicides close to the tree without hitting the stem. If you do not use Grow
Tubes, be very careful with herbicide, especially on young trees, because they
can absorb it directly through the bark. It only takes a few drops to kill the
tree; so apply only when there is no wind, use a colored dye mixed in the
herbicide so you can see it being applied and protect the trunk with a shield
or hood on the fertilizer wand.
spring freezes are a
problem in northern locations, especially after the plants have leafed
your trees have already started to grow and you expect a late freeze,
should make every effort to protect them, such as using Grow Tubes and
measures. Some areas even in Zone 5 can have killing frosts as late as
Day! Dunstan Chestnut trees can tolerate temps as low as -20 degrees for
established trees. Normal growing altitude is 4,000'. The Dunstan
Chestnut requires 250 chill hours for for the chestnuts to ripen.
Size Shipped 1 year old seedlings 18-36" container grown - $24.95
NOTE* Fall trees are shipped in a container & Spring trees are shipped bareroot without soil or a container.