Why not download our hazel fact sheet?
hazel fact sheet
Or try this wickedly scrumptious recipe!
hazelnut, chocolate and banana bread and butter pudding
Deciduous shrub with multiple stems
- Grows to some six metres tall
- Smooth, brown-grey bark that splits and flakes with age
- Distinctive round, slightly hairy, pointed-tipped leaves
- In spring it develops yellow catkins
Female flowers look more like leaf buds with red styles protruding from the tip
The edible nuts, held in green, leafy cups, turn brown when ripe
Found throughout the UK in woodland, scrub and hedgerows.
When to look for
Did you know?
- Hazel provides food and accommodation for the common or hazel dormouse (Muscardinus avellanarius)
- It forms pure woods on the west coast of the UK that are home to rare lichens
- Hazel gloves, Hypocreopsis rhododendri, is a rare fungus growing only with hazel in Britain
- The fiery milkcap mushroom, Lactarius pyrogalus, grows mainly with hazel
- It is the stick of choice for water diviners
- In Scotland, hazel nuts were processed on a large scale in Mesolithic times - evidence of this was found in a midden pit during an archaelolgical dig
- It is used for making hurdles, and wattle and daub walls
- It was once used for making tally sticks to record payments to the Exchequer
- The Celts believed that hazelnuts were a source of wisdom – the Gaelic word for the nuts was cno, with the word for wisdom being cnocach. They had an ancient tale of nine hazel trees that grew around a sacred pool. Salmon living in the pool ate the falling nuts and absorbed the wisdom. The number of bright spots on the salmon’s skin showed how many nuts they had eaten