Chestnut Grows in Brookline MA

truffler1635 at truffler1635 at
Mon Oct 9 22:38:42 EST 2000

In article <39E267F2.48263A30 at>,
  Karl Davies <karl at> wrote:
> Marvin Minsky wrote:
> > In 1994 I found some sprouting chestnuts in the local supermarket.
> > I planted them in a pot in a little greenhouse.
> > Three of them grew.
> > Next year I planted them in the nack yard.  One died.  Another is not 10
> > feet high.
> > The third one is now 35 feet high, with trunk about 8 inches diameter.
> > It has about 50 tennis-ball size fruits.  They just started to fall off.
> > Squirrels got some.  The burrs have long very thin, very sharp spints
> That's pretty amazing for Massachusetts.  I'd suggest you save and propagate
> as many of those nuts as you can.  You may have something of value there.
> Given the type of chestnuts generally available in stores, it's probably a
> European chestnut.  This species is not resistant to chestnut blight and
> will probably get infected and die eventually.
> But if it can grow that fast and produce nuts that quickly, it may have
> value as a coppice tree for use in woody agriculture.  See

Karl's post has reminded me that chestnut (of any variety, as far as I
know) are considered excellent bedlogs for growing shiitake (Lentinula
edodes). Since mushrooms bedlogs are typically rather small (2-12 inches
diameter) and in Japan copicing shiia oak (actually a Chinese chestnut)
is also done. That's why shiitake in Japan is a billion (yes, not an
error) dollar industry each year.

Daniel B. Wheeler

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