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The Weird Ways That Nuts Grow

OMG, what is that cashew thing!?

1. Peanuts

Peanuts are legumes, not nuts, and so they don’t grow on trees. The peanut plant flowers above the ground, but the peanuts actually grow underground.

4. Almonds

The fuzzy green almond fruit appears in early summer, and by July it begins to split open. By October, the split widens and allows the almond nut to dry out.

7. Cashews

Cashews are a tropical plant that produces an apple-like fruit and a nut that grows out of each fruit. The apple, which starts out yellow and becomes red when ripe, is edible and high in vitamin C, but it’s reportedly not that tasty. Each fruit produces only one nut. If you’ve noticed that you can’t buy unshelled cashews, there’s a reason: the shells are toxic — they contain the same chemical as poison ivy and can cause rashes.

10. Chestnuts

Chestnuts grow on trees in prickly green husks that eventually dry out and split open. It takes a seedling about five years to start producing fruit.

12. Brazil Nuts

Brazil nuts grow in South American forests in large fruits that can weigh up to four pounds. Inside each fruit are about 10-20 nuts packed like an orange.

15. Pine Nuts

Pine nuts are edible seeds that grow in pine cones. Each cone contains about 50 seeds, but they’re hard to harvest, which partially explains why pine nuts are soooo expensive.

18. Pistachios

The pistachio tree is a desert plant that grows fruit in clusters. When the shells are ripe, they change from green to yellow and split open, revealing the nut. The coolest part? That split often happens with an audible pop.

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