Want to find hazelnut bushes? Now’s the time

I’ve been working on a comprehensive overview of foraging. It is coming soon! In the meantime, please enjoy this quick post.

If you want to know where to look for hazelnuts in the fall, now is the perfect time of the year to find the bushes. Hazelnut bushes/trees are small, short, and nondescript. They’re not easy to find when the fields and forests are green. They blend in. Thankfully for me and you and other foragers, they have a fairly noticeable winter feature.

Hazelnut Catkins

Hazelnut catkins are quite distinct in the winter. The male flowers of hazelnut bushes, they persist all season long, providing food for wildlife and growing back when they’re a meal or blown off branches by the winds of winter unencumbered by tree leaves.

Look for hazelnut catkins 5-15′ high on branches near streams and field edges. Make note of where they are, and return in the fall to find the brown, “spiky” looking involucres that hold 5-12 delicious, free hazelnuts!

Hazelnut bushes with an evening sky backdrop. The large dark objects are involucres the squirrels haven’t found. Below the nearest involucre are several greenish-light brown catkins.

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